UK Nonlinear News, November 1999

Award: Stuart S. Antman and John M. Ball awarded con Kármán Prize

The Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM) has awarded its Theodore von Kármán prize for 1999 to STUART S. ANTMAN of the University of Maryland, College Park, and JOHN M. BALL of Oxford University. Antman was honoured for his work on viscosity of solids and Ball for work on microstructure and the ausentite-martensite transition.

The von Kármán Prize is awarded every five years for a notable applications of mathematics to mechanics and/or the engineering sciences made during the five to ten years preceding the award. The award may be given either for a single notable achievement or for a collection of such achievements. The award consists of a $1,000 cash prize and a hand-calligraphed certificate. The members of the selection committee for the 1999 award were Philippe Ciarlet, Joseph B. Keller, and Jerold E. Marsden (chair).

Source: Notes of the American Mathematical Society, Volume 46, Number 8, September 1999, page 911.

Award: Graeme Wake awarded New Zealand Association of Scientists' Marsden Medal for 1999

The New Zealand Association of Scientists' Marsden Medal for 1999 has been awarded to Professor Graeme Wake, Professor of Applied Mathematics and Dean of Postgraduate Studies at the University of Canterbury.

The Marsden Medal recognises Professor Wake's outstanding services to the profession and cause of science in New Zealand in the widest connotation of the phrase.

Professor Wake has played a significant role in fostering the sharing and utilisation of mathematical knowledge within New Zealand. He was a foundation member of the New Zealand Mathematical Society in 1974 and is currently President and a Fellow of that society. Professor Wake was instrumental in expanding the AIAM to ANZAIM (Australian and New Zealand Industrial and Applied Mathematics) to New Zealand. He has been the only New Zealand President of the Australasian grouping of applied mathematicians. He has been one of the most successful academics in mentoring of students, and directing their research into applicable areas.

Professor Wake has played a pivotal role in actively establishing and enlarging cross-disciplinary applied mathematical research in New Zealand. His research relates to many real world problems. His early work allowed prediction of when wool bales and wood chips would spontaneously burst into flames. This was extended to consider many biological problems, such as: When do algal blooms occur? What are the best ways to fence grazing animals in paddocks? How do epidemics develop? How does cell division influence growth? How do stoats impact kiwi populations? and so on.

One of Professor Wake's enduring collaborations is with Professor Brian Gray, a chemist who currently works in Australia. They were among the first to introduce advanced mathematical techniques to explain when materials would spontaneously combust. They applied this work to many problems: fish and chips, sugar cane, laundry, coal, wood bales, milk powders. For example, the fish and chips work involved Professor Wake appearing as an expert witness in a court case to decide whether hot crumble (that is left over pieces of batter and chips) can spontaneously ignite.

Professor Wake has chosen to remain based in New Zealand being keen to develop Applied Mathematics in the widest sense here. He is supported strongly by his wife Elizabeth and family, his Christian philosophy and a love of tennis as a recreational activity.

Call for proposals from the Maxwell Institute

The Maxwell Institute for High Performance Computing Applications invites proposals for research programmes in any branch of the computational sciences. New opportunities created by the advancing technology will guide the choice of programme topics. However, the following will be important strands in the work of the Institute:

Source: Stephen McLaughlin (

Reviews of the fourth ICIAM

SIAM News Volume 32(7), September 1999, contains two reviews of the fourth ICIAM written by and Gail Corbett (the lead article, pages 1 & 4) and Bob O'Malley (pages 6-8). Although the total number of applied mathematicians attending exceeded 1600, from over 60 countries, Professor Malley expressed disappointment with the size of the British turnout.

John Hogan reviews 15 publications on the applications of nonlinear dynamics

A review of 15 publications concerned with dynamical systems and chaos, with an emphasis on the applications of nonlinear dynamics, has been written by John Hogan. It appeared in SIAM Review, 41(2), 375-413, 1999. This review can be downloaded from the SIAM web site at

Visual Recurrence Analysis 4.0 released

This is to announce that version 4.0 of Visual Recurrence Analysis (VRA) software for Windows 95, 98 and NT has been released.

Visual Recurrence Analysis is a software for topological analysis, qualitative and quantitative assessment, and nonparametric prediction of nonlinear/chaotic time series. It can detect hidden patterns and determinism in time series using a graphical device known as the recurrence plot. VRA first expands a given one-dimensional time series into a higher-dimensional space, in which the dynamics of the underlying generator takes place. VRA then constructs a recurrence plot, which is essentially a graphical representation of the correlation integral in such a way so that the time dependence in the system under study is preserved.

VRA is very fast and highly interactive. Extensive online help and references are included. A major addition to VRA v4.0 is nonlinear time series prediction using nonparametric methods. You have a choice of five different predictors (nearest neighbour, local constant, kernel regression, local linear, and locally weighted linear), seven kernel functions (Epanechnikov, Gaussian, exponential, bisquare, tricube, inverse, triangular), five distance measures (Euclidean, Manhattan, max norm, by cosine, by correlation), and much more. Other new features include (modified) False Nearest Neighbours method, recurrence histogram, and the support for the data files in MS Excel format (in addition to plain ASCII text, comma-separated (.csv), formatted text (.prn), and sound (.wav) formats). All charts and graphs are now zoom-enabled and can now be saved and printed. Recurrence quantification analysis is improved to reflect the users' suggestions.

VRA v4.0 remains free provided that it is used for educational/ academic/research purposes. VRA v4.0 can be downloaded from

If you have any comments or suggestions regarding VRA and its use, please email me at

Eugene Kononov: (

<< Move to UK Nonlinear News Issue Eighteen Index Page (November 1999).
Last Updated: 28th October 1999.