UK Nonlinear News, March 2003


MSc in Astrodynamics

University of Surrey

The University of Surrey Department of Mathematics and Statistics invites applications for places on its MSc course in "Astrodynamics". The course is taught jointly by the Department and the Surrey Space Centre and provides training in the development and application of mathematical methods for spacecraft dynamics, control and mission design. It will suit graduates with good mathematics, physics, engineering or similar degrees with a high mathematical content. The course is particularly appropriate for students who wish to pursue academic or more applied careers in space mission design, but also provides an excellent training for similar careers across a broad range of related fields in mathematics and engineering.

Scholarships are available for outstanding UK applicants. For further information and details of how to apply visit:

Source: Mark Roberts .

PhD Studentships

Pattern Formation Theory and its Applications

Department of Mathematics, City University, London

A doctoral training award is available for a for a student interested in working on a project in Mathematical Chemistry/Biology. The award is open to any UK or EU citizen with a good first honours degree (or the European equivalent) and covers the full payment of the academic fees (currently GB 3000/year) and a stipend of GB 10,000 for living expenses/year. The project is due to start in October and will run for 3 years.

The project is centred around the subject of pattern formation theory and its applications (Turing and flow and diffusion distributed patterns or FDS). Major applications of these models include chemical pattern formation, animal development, ecology and virus architecture. More details about potential projects and themes are on available on the web page below. The award holder will join an enthusiastic and very dynamic group in nonlinear dynamics consisting of four staff members and three PhD students. Research interests within the group include: pattern formation and fluid dynamics, pattern formation with symmetry, nonlinear dynamical systems.

Potential strong candidates should write ASAP with a detailed CV, a short presentation of interest and two references to:

Dr Razvan Satnoianu, Department of Mathematics, School of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences, City University, Northampton Square, LONDON EC1V 0HB, UK.

Industrial Mathematics

New Zealand

Postgraduate Scholarships are available for support of students undertaking research degrees (Doctoral or Masters theses) in Industrial Mathematics. These awards are provided by the NZ Institute of Mathematics and its Applications (a recently-established Centre of Research Excellence).

Scholarships are available to support study on mathematical problems arising in industry (including the biological and financial industries) and are available from March 2003. The scholarships may be held at any NZ University that can provide appropriate supervision.

During the second half of 2003, a thematic programme in Industrial Mathematics will be held in New Zealand. Scholars will be expected to participate in regional applied mathematics workshops during that period, and also the ANZIAM (Australian and NZ Industrial Applied Mathematics) Mathematics-in-Industry Study Groups (MISG) which will be held in Auckland in January 2004 and 2005, as appropriate.

Candidates should enclose a full curriculum vitae, information about their proposed or current course of study, a statement from the proposed or current supervisor, as well as the name and contact details of at least one other referee. Selection will be made by a committee which is representative of the various industrial and applied mathematics groups within NZ.

Further details are available from:

Professor Robert McKibbin
Director, Centre for Mathematics in Industry
Institute of Information and Mathematical Sciences
Massey University, Albany campus
Private Bag 102 904, North Shore MSC
Auckland, New Zealand
Phone: (64) (9) 443 9799 extension 41040

Source: Professor Graeme Wake .

The application of synchronization theory to the study of plankton patchiness

Southampton Oceanography Centre

Applications are invited for a PhD studentship to apply synchronization theory (*) to unravel the generation and dynamical evolution of spatial structure in marine plankton communities. Such plankton "patchiness" is one of the oldest marine observations and yet still poorly understood despite its influence on the global carbon cycle. The aim of the project is to determine to what extent plankton populations act like an ensemble of coupled systems with the potential to synchronize, and to investigate the relevant length scales of spatial pattern arising from such behaviour. No previous experience in oceanography or marine biology is required though familiarity with non-linear dynamics and coupled differential equations is essential. Programming experience in Fortran or C would also be beneficial. There may be a possibility to participate in an oceanographic cruise as part of the project.

The studentship is funded by the joint NERC and EPSRC Environmental Mathematics and Statistics programme and will be held primarily at Southampton Oceanography Centre (SOC) with frequent visits to the Department of Mathematics, University of Glasgow (UG). Supervisors will be Dr. Adrian Martin, Dr. Meric Srokosz (SOC), Dr. Martin Bees (UG) and Professor Mike Fasham FRS (SOC). Additional funds are available for travel to and accommodation at the University of Glasgow.

Applications are welcome at all times and the post will be filled as soon as a suitable applicant is found. Absolute closing date is 1st July 2003. Non-UK EU nationals are also eligible to apply but would receive only fees and no maintenance.

Further details can be obtained from the webpage or by contacting:

Dr. Adrian Martin
George Deacon Division
Southampton Oceanography Centre
Empress Dock
Southampton SO14 3ZH
Tel: 023 80596342

* Background information on synchronization can be found in Nature 20th Feb 2003, 421, 780-782.

Source: Martin Bees.

Theoretical and Applied Nonlinear Systems

University of Surrey

The Department of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Surrey invites applications for Marie-Curie Training Fellowships to be held during the academic year 2003-2004. Candidates must be registered for a PhD or similar research degree at a university in the European Union (excluding the UK) or an Associated State. Fellowships enable them to visit Surrey to work with members of the Department for periods of 3-12 months on topics of mutual interest.

The research of the Department focuses particularly on applications of analysis, geometry, ergodic theory and symmetry methods to finite and infinite dimensional systems (general and Hamiltonian), and on applications of nonlinear systems theory to problems from physics, chemistry, biology and engineering. Examples include fluid flows, sand rippling, electric circuits, molecular dynamics and spectra, astrodynamics, and the modelling and analysis of biological and bio-fluid systems.

Further information on the Department and its research can be found at:

The next formal closing date for applications is 1st June 2003, but informal enquiries can be sent at any time to the coordinator: Professor Mark Roberts, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Surrey, Guildford, GU2 7XH, United Kingdom, or any other member of the Department.

Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the coordinator or other member of the Department to discuss their application before submitting it, and at least 4 months before the proposed visit.

The University of Surrey is committed to an equal opportunities policy.

Source: Mark Roberts .

Postdoctoral Position

Phase-field models for nanoscale dynamic processes in thin film phase-change alloys

School of Engineering, Computer Science and Mathematics

University of Exeter

We are seeking a Research Fellow (for up to thirty-three months) for an EPSRC funded project. The successful applicant will, commencing in October 2003, join a vibrant research group of applied mathematicians and electronic engineers (research in applied mathematics was rated 5 in RAE2001) in the newly-formed School of Engineering, Computer Science and Mathematics at the University of Exeter.

This project aims to construct, adapt and analyse phase-field models for nanoscale dynamic processes in thin film phase-change alloys, appropriate to the next generation of optical data storage media. It will focus on asymptotic behaviour and stability of fronts in nonlinear phase-change materials. Aims include the examination of spatio-temporal stability of patterns, and spontaneous symmetry breaking effects using numerical and analytical methods. Of particular interest will be the influence of the material parameters on phase-change and instability.

Applicants should have a relevant PhD and be applied mathematicians or engineers with a sound mathematical and numerical modelling experience. Applicants should preferably have experience in one or more of the following areas: phase-field models, phase-change alloys, bifurcation theory for spatially extended systems, computational, analytical and/or asymptotic aspects of nonlinear partial differential equations.

Salary will be in the range 18,265 to 24,121 p.a. with placement depending on experience and qualifications.

An application pack is available from Dr Peter Ashwin (quoting reference number R8133). Completed applications should be sent to

Dr Ashwin,
School of Engineering, Computer Science and Mathematics,
University of Exeter,
Laver Building,
and received by 23 May 2003.


Source: Dr Peter Ashwin

Development of Structure in Sunspot/a>

Department of Applied Mathematics

The University of Leeds

This PPARC-funded post is available from 1 October 2003, or as soon as possible thereafter, for up to 36 months, depending on age and experience. You will work with Dr A.M. Rucklidge as part of the astrophysical fluid dynamics group; the aim of the project is to study the development of structure in sunspots. You will be expected to develop axisymmetric and three dimensional codes to investigate the onset of penumbral structure in sunspots, and to incorporate models of coronal heating into nonlinear convection calculations. You will also conduct comparisons between the numerical models and satellite observations of flows around sunspots and coronal activity above active regions. The overall aim of the project is to improve our understanding of the basic physical mechanisms that are responsible for the observed structure of sunspots.

You should have (or be about to complete) a PhD, and should have experience in numerical solution of partial differential equations. A background in magnetohydrodynamics, with particular emphasis on astrophysical fluid dynamics, would be useful. The group has extensive expertise in numerical techniques and access to high performance computing facilities.

Research IA (18,265 - 27,339 pounds p.a.)

Informal enquiries to, and application packs from:

Dr A.M. Rucklidge

Department of Applied Mathematics,
University of Leeds
Leeds LS2 9JT, UK
+44 113 343 5161

Applications forms are available online and should be returned to Dr A.M. Rucklidge at the above address, along with a CV and the names of three referees. Please also complete an Equal Opportunities Form available at the same site.

Job reference 051-095-004-027
Closing date 16 May 2003


Lectureships in Mathematics

Department of Mathematics, Imperial College London

Applications are invited for several lectureships in Pure and Applied Mathematics to be taken up in October 2003.

Both sections were rated 5* in the last RAE and we will make appointments to strengthen existing areas and develop new ones. Full details of the research areas already covered here can be found on our departmental homepage. Priority areas identified for appointments include Mathematical Biology, PDE's, Geometry and Number Theory but outstanding applicants in any area of Mathematics are encouraged to apply.

The posts are based on the South Kensington campus and appointments will be on the lecturer scale 29,621 to 33,679 p.a. plus London Allowance of 2,134.

An application form and further particulars can be obtained from Anne Rowlands on 0207 594 8481, fax 0207 594 8517.

The completed application form, CV, list of publications and names of three referees should be sent to Anne Rowlands, Mathematics Department, Imperial College London, Huxley Building, South Kensington campus, London SW7 2AZ.

Closing date: 15 May 2003

Valuing diversity and committed to equality of opportunity

Nonlinear Dynamics in the real world.

For any of you interested in exploring the robustness of concepts from nonlinear dynamics outside of safe confines of mathematics, we expect to have several positions this fall working between the LSE Centre for the Analysis of Time Series and Pembroke College, Oxford. The main focus of this work is the construction and interpretation of probability forecasts in real systems with imperfect, nonlinear models. We hope the appointments will include at least one more theoretically focused person (nonlinear dynamics, information theory, probability theory) and one more numerically focused person (fluid or weather modelling, dexterity with rather large data sets, algorithms), but the group works as a whole, aiming to break theoretical preconceptions with both lab data (using our own in-house models) and real-time weather data (using operational weather forecasts from both European and American centres). We are interested in a coherent underlying philosophy of predictability and the economic exploitation of existing forecast products (see for real-time interpretation of US weather forecasts). Those interested in more information and the official advertisements (when available) should contact

Leonard Smith and Mark Roulston

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Page Created: 1 May 2003.
Last Updated: 13 May 2003.