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OnderzoekVan Swinderen Institute

Dr. B.J.T. Jones, Kapteyn Institute, University of Groningen: Computational Geometry in (Astro)Physics


17 February 2011 FWN-Building 5111.0080, Nijenborgh 4, 9747 AG, Groningen
Speaker: Dr. Bernard Jones
Affiliation: Kapteyn Institute, University of Groningen
Title: Computational Geometry in (Astro)Physics
Date: 17-02-2011
Start: 16.00
Location: FWN-Building 5111.0080
Host: Inga Kamp


Equations are just the boring part of mathematics.  I attempt to see
things in terms of geometry" (Stephen Hawking).

Recognition of patterns in spatial and/or temporal data has been and
still is a driving force behind the recognition and understanding of
underlying physical processes and even the discovery of laws of physics. 

Geometry provides tools for analysing patterns: here we think of
fractals, Morse Theory, catastrophes, tilings, tessellations, and even

The distribution of galaxies on large scales defines a cosmic structure
that is manifestly non-random and which can provide important clues as
to the origin of our Universe as we see it.  I explain how the recent
development of new geometric methods are capable of delineating and
quantifying this structure with high precision, providing robust and
quantitative measures of the environments in which galaxies are born.

The geometric methods used in cosmology/physics find wide ranging
applications outside of physics.  I will, by way of example, recount how
they can be used in the effort to save the White Tailed Eagle of
Northern Europe from extinction by wind turbines :)

Last modified:12 September 2014 11.22 a.m.