Colloquia Patavina: Kepler, Newton and Numerical Analysis

Martedi' 9 Novembre 2010 - prof. Gerhard Wanner


Martedi' 9 Novembre 2010 alle ore 16:00 in aula 1A150 della Torre Archimede il Prof. Gerhard Wanner (Université de Genéve) terra' una conferenza della serie Colloquia Patavina.

La Commissione Colloquia
M.A. Garuti, M. Pavon, P. Ciatti, F. Rossi

Kepler, Newton and Numerical Analysis

Gerhard Wanner (Université de Genéve)

Numerical methods are usually constructed for solving mathematical problems such as differential equations or optimization problems. In this talk we discuss the fact that numerical methods, applied inversely, also were important to ESTABLISH these models. We show in detail the discovery of the laws of planetary motion by Kepler and Newton, which stood at the beginning of modern science. The 400th anniversary of the publications of Kepler's Astronomia Nova (1609) and Galilei's Sidereus Nuncius (1610) is a good occasion for this investigation.

-Breve curriculum
Professor Wanner studied mathematics in Innsbruck with Grobner. He spent his entire career, from 1972 to his retirement a few years ago, at the University of Geneva. In Geneva he created an outstanding school of numerical analysis, which gave fundamental contributions to the field of numerical solution of ordinary differential equations, particularly Runge Kutta methods, methods for stiff systems and, more recently, geometric integration methods. He has co-authored several seminal books on these topics. Professor Wanner has served as President of the Swiss Mathematical Society for the years 1998-1999 and as Head of the mathematics section of the Suiss Academy of Science for six years. Together with his former pupil Ernst Hairer, he was the recipient of the joint ETH-SIAM "Peter Henrici Price" in 2003. During the writing of his books, and in the preparation of his teaching, he got more and more interested in the historical development of mathematical ideas, a subject to which he has devoted an increasing attention in the last years.

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