Archive for May 2012

Predicting burglary patterns through math modeling of crime

Philadelphia – May 31, 2012 -  Pattern formation in physical, biological, and sociological systems has been studied for many years. Despite the fact that these subject areas are completely diverse, the mathematics that describes underlying patterns in these systems can be surprisingly similar. Mathematical tools can be used to study such systems and predict their patterns. Read the rest of this entry »

An overview of M3 Challenge 2012

At Moody’s Mega Math Challenge 2012, thousands of high school students created mathematical models to determine the best regions in the country for establishing rail lines as part of a revived High-Speed Intercity Passenger Rail (HSIPR) Program. The regions were ranked based on estimates of ridership numbers over the next 20 years, and costs of building and maintenance, in addition to the effects such rail networks would have on American dependence on foreign energy. Watch a 5-minute overview video of the Challenge below:

Annual Exhibition of the Coalition for National Science Funding

Dr. Hans Kaper of the SIAM Committee on Science Policy (center) with Dr. Sastry Pantula (DMS Division Director) and Dr. Cora Marrett (NSF Deputy Director) at the CNSF Exhibition

The Coalition for National Science Funding (CNSF) held its 18th Annual Exhibition last week, which was a huge success.

An annual exhibition and reception is held by the CNSF each spring to showcase research made possible by the National Science Foundation. University researchers and educators describe their work to interested Members of Congress and their staff at exhibit booths displaying a wide variety of scientific research and education projects.

270 people were in attendance this year, including five Members of Congress (Representatives Lois Capps, Hansen Clarke, Colleen Hanabusa, Rush Holt and Lamar Smith).

Dr. Hans Kaper, Adjunct Professor at Georgetown University in Washington, DC, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (pictured above) was SIAM’s representative at this year’s event. He is a member of the SIAM Committee on Science Policy.

Additional pictures from the Exhibition are available at the photographer’s website here.

SIAM Members Annual Business Meeting

The annual business meeting of SIAM members will be held on Tuesday, July 10, 2012, at 6:15-7:15 PM in the Nicollet ABC room on Level 1 of the Hyatt Regency Minneapolis during the upcoming SIAM Annual Meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Participation is open to all SIAM members. The meeting will be chaired by SIAM President Nick Trefethen and will include a review of SIAM activities, finances, and plans for the future. Refreshments will be served.

New report highlights the role of math and computational science in industrial innovation

PHILADELPHIA, PA May 21, 2012The Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM) is pleased to announce the release of its latest report on Mathematics in Industry.

Mathematical and computational sciences have many applications in industry, some that have dramatic effects on the bottom line of companies, and others that simply allow organizations to function efficiently in the 21st-century data-rich marketplace. A newly-developed technology is not confined to the group or company that designs it, but contributes to the enrichment of science as a whole. Read the rest of this entry »

Seeking nominations for the SIAM/ACM Prize in CS&E 2013

The SIAM/ACM Prize in Computational Science and Engineering is awarded biennially in the area of computational science in recognition of outstanding contributions to the development and use of mathematical and computational tools and methods for the solution of science and engineering problems. It is intended to recognize either one individual or a group of individuals for outstanding research contributions to the field of CS&E.  The contribution(s) for which the award is made must be publicly available and may belong to any aspect of computational science in its broadest sense.

The prize will be awarded at the SIAM Conference on Computational Science and Engineering (CSE13), to be held February 25 – March 1, 2013, in Boston, Massachusetts.

The award will include a total cash prize of $5,000 and a certificate containing the citation.  SIAM will reimburse reasonable travel expenses to attend the award ceremony.

Past recipients of the prize are: John B. Bell and Phillip Colella; Achi Brandt; Chi-Wang Shu; Cleve Moler; and J. Tinsley Oden.

A letter of nomination, including description of the contribution(s), and a CV of the candidate(s) should be addressed to Dr. Christopher Johnson, Chair, SIAM/ACM Prize in CS&E Committee, and sent by JUNE 1, 2012 to  The call for nominations can be found here.

Mathematical modeling and the dynamics of obesity

Math can often provide quicker and more reliable answers to medical questions where experimental research could take years.  So it is with obesity, as Dr. Carson Chow of the NIH’s National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases explained in a recent interview with the New York Times.

At the 2010 SIAM Annual Meeting, Dr. Chow gave an overview of mathematical models on obesity, giving a very engaging account of “The Dynamics of Obesity” in an invited presentation.

Weight change in the human body can be viewed simply as the difference between the rate of food intake and energy expenditure, Dr. Chow explained, going on to detail the various factors that can influence obesity. The energy density of various body components including water, bones, minerals, fat, protein and carbohydrates influence weight gain, in addition to fuel sources or macronutrients. By applying mathematical models, Dr. Chow illustrated that the “food push” in America is the primary reason for increasing obesity in the U.S. population. The high amount of food available per capita in the U.S. should be mitigated in order to control the obesity epidemic, he concluded.

Dr. Chow’s complete presentation from SIAM AN10 can be viewed on the SIAM Presents archives here.

You can also read detailed insights and a summary of his AN10 talk on his blog here.

Ricardo Cortez Awarded Blackwell-Tapia Prize

Ricardo Cortez, Tulane University’s Pendergraft William Larkin Duren Professor of Mathematics, has been awarded the 2012 Blackwell-Tapia Prize. The prize recognizes a mathematical scientist who has contributed significantly to research in his or her field of expertise and who has served as a role model for mathematical scientists and students from underrepresented minority groups or has contributed in other significant ways to addressing the problem of the underrepresentation of minorities in mathematics. Dr. Cortez is internationally regarded as a leading researcher in fluid dynamics and mathematical modeling. He has also been a leader in undergraduate mentoring and the development of training opportunities for underrepresented minority students in the mathematical sciences. Dr. Cortez will be the guest of honor at the Seventh Blackwell-Tapia Conference at ICERM on November 9–10, 2012. Dr. Cortez serves on SIAM’s Diversity Advisory Committee. You can find the full announcement of the award here.

SIAM Unwrapped – May 2012

 News & announcements for the SIAM membership community

Dear SIAM Members,

In case you missed the Annual Meeting Special issue, you can find an HTML version here:

Among the highlights included are a special professional development workshop for women and a tutorial on mathematically modeling interest rates—pre-registration for both sessions is only open for a few more weeks! In addition, read details on the various plenary sessions, the community lecture, and the many new events available for students.

Look out for the new SIAM Report on Mathematics in Industry to be released May 21. A link to the PDF version of the report will be announced on the SIAM website. Read the rest of this entry »

Recipients named for the Sixth Annual SIAM Student Chapter Certificates of Recognition

The 2012 SIAM Student Chapter Certificates of Recognition have been awarded to 62 students who have made outstanding contributions to their SIAM student chapters. This program recognizes the importance of student contributions in creating and sustaining exciting chapters, acknowledges students’ efforts within the greater SIAM community, and provides a noteworthy commendation for students to add to their records for career building.

SIAM congratulates all of the recipients and thanks them for their contributions to the development and growth of SIAM student chapters. Read the rest of this entry »