GRANVILLE, Ohio—A Denison University professor and four students will provide a demonstration of mathematical knot theory at the U.S.A. Science and Engineering Festival, the nation’s largest celebration of science and engineering, which will take place April 28 and 29, in Washington, D.C.
Associate Professor of Mathematics Lew Ludwig with sophomore Janie Frandesn, (Albion, Mich.), junior Holly Wilson, (Farmersville, Ohio), sophomore Paul Yang, (Chengdu, China) and senior Nathan Zakahi, (Mankato, Minn.), will provide a demonstration of stick knots, a closed loop in three-dimensional space. Using various hands-on demonstrations, Ludwig and his students will introduce participants to the field of mathematical knot theory and even provide them with the opportunity to conduct original mathematical research by trying to construct a 3-dimensional knot out of common plumbing tubing and elbows. The activity is sponsored by the American Mathematical Society (AMS).
Ludwig is a leading specialist in knot theory and set theoretic topology and a member of the AMS. He heads Technically Speaking (http://techspeaking.denison.edu/), a project funded by a National Science Foundation to improve the oral communication skills of undergraduate mathematics and related STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) students and he is co-organizer of UnKnot Conference, the undergraduate knot theory conference, to be held July 15-18, 2012, at Denison. Ludwig’s research publications appear in journals, books and conference proceedings and he has been an invited speaker at conferences throughout the United States and abroad.
The USA Science & Engineering Festival (USASEF) and Book Fair is a grassroots collaboration of more than 500 of the United States’ leading science and engineering organizations to increase public awareness of the importance of science. It encourages youth to pursue careers in science and engineering by celebrating science. The free, family-friendly event allows kids and adults to participate in more than 2,000 hands-on activities and see more than 200 live performances by science celebrities, explorers, best-selling authors, entrepreneurs and world-renowned experts. Lockheed Martin is the presenting host of the USASEF and is joined by many other festival sponsors and partners.
Denison University, founded in 1831, is an independent, residential liberal arts institution located in Granville, Ohio. A highly selective college enrolling 2,100 full-time undergraduate students from all 50 states and dozens of foreign countries, Denison is a place where innovative faculty and motivated students collaborate in rigorous scholarship, civic engagement and the cultivation of independent thinking.