Department of Mathematics Hosts Summer School on Applied Mathematics and Scientific Computing

October 31, 2016
By: 
Carlo Mallari

The Department of Mathematics of Ateneo de Manila University (AdMU) hosted the Summer School on Applied Mathematics and Scientific Computing on October 3 to 6, 2016. Professors Peter Bastian and Kurt Roth from the Interdisciplinary Center for Scientific Computing (IWR) of Heidelberg University and Professor Thomas Richter from the University of Magdeburg gave lectures to and facilitated computer laboratory exercises for fifty participating academicians and industry practitioners from Cambodia, Laos, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam. AdMU and IWR were joint organizers of the summer school, a product of the burgeoning collaboration between AdMU and IWR that began with IWR’s visit to AdMU in 2015.

The summer school’s lectures focused on the use of finite element methods in finding approximate solutions to partial differential equations (the Navier-Stokes equations) characterizing fluid dynamics. The role of these methods in simulation was established and highlighted during the laboratory exercises, where participants worked on portable Linux systems and made visualizations using ParaView. The exercises gave participants a clear idea of how water in an aquifer flows upon the introduction of wells that pump water in and out of it, with the last exercise centering on how to position wells so as to efficiently pump contaminants out. In addition to these lectures and exercises, the morning of the summer school’s second day allowed a few participants to share about their current research endeavors and to pick the minds of everyone present during their presentations about extending these existing projects and exploring other research questions.

Besides providing an avenue for knowledge transfer, the summer school brought together people with diverse cultural backgrounds, which enriched every connection they made. This diversity also paved the way for the participants’ fruitful afternoon exploring the city of Manila and getting a taste of Filipino culture.

This summer school is a glimpse of what AdMU and IWR hope to be a longstanding partnership between them. Given the two institutions’ common commitment to academic excellence and interdisciplinarity, it is not difficult to believe that the partnership will be lasting indeed.