Atmospheric chemists like this Energy Economist study the chemistry of Earth’s atmosphere, the gases that surround our planet. While in graduate school at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he studied fluid dynamics and chemical modeling, looking at the ways aerosols (tiny particles in air and mist) produced by human industry as well as natural processes affect clouds. [Interested in clouds? Check out the work Physicist Nicholas Carrera did at the University of Chicago’s Cloud Physics Laboratory.]
Energy Economists like this Atmospheric Chemist examine the ways changes in technology, economics, climate, natural resources, and politics affect the markets that supply power to our homes, workplaces, and infrastructure.
Energy economist and atmospheric chemist Politics can make energy and climate change seem black and white, dividing people and organizations into those that support traditional energy-producing industries (like coal and oil) and those that support newer, renewable resources (like. wind and solar energy). So it might surprise you to learn that “a number of the big oil and power companies made big early bets on wind, solar, and biofuels.” An energy economist Math4Science interviewed, also trained as an atmospheric chemist, explained just how complicated — as well as important — the realities shaping energy production are. Note: Because he… Learn more
Topologists study shapes of different dimensions. Think of the shapes they study as malleable (squishy and stretchable, like clay). To a topologist, a solid triangle and a solid square are the same sort of two-dimensional shape (one with no holes in it). A shape that looks similar to a donut is called a torus. Some topologists study knots, which helps chemists model and understand the way molecules behave. Topology is also useful for scientists interested in the shapes DNA forms. Strands of genetic material tend to wrap around themselves … to tie themselves in knots. Mathematician Emille Lawrence, a topologist,… Learn more
Topologist At some point, you learned to tell the difference between a triangle (a polygon with three sides), a rectangle (four sides…), and a circle (the set of points that are a certain distance from a particular point). Understanding the differences between those shapes may have been one of your first achievements in a field of mathematics called “geometry.” Topologist Emille Lawrence focuses on another field of math, one in which a triangle, a rectangle, and a circle are all considered the same shape: a closed, one-dimensional shape with one hole inside of it. Topologists define a shape by… Learn more
Internet Applications Developer The apps you use on your phone were first thought up by people who started with just a cool idea. Do you “tweet” on Twitter? Read on to find out how your tweets might (or might not) indicate that you’re part of an emerging revolution. But not all apps are available to everyone. Companies and other organizations use computers and applications (apps) to share information with their clients and employees. David Scheiner is an internet applications developer and architect in England. One thing he loves about his work is that “you’re interacting with code written by so… Learn more
What apps do you have on your phone? Where did they come from? Internet applications developers help people turn their ideas into virtual realities. Government, social media, corporate, entertainment, and other organizations collect and share information and accomplish their goals online and in other computerized formats. Internet Applications Developer David Scheiner uses his computer programming, people, and math skills to help companies “use technologies to further their goals.” Thanks to his efforts, they are able to collect and organize the information they need to deliver the apps we (their clients) rely on.
Behavioral Ecologist Jeanne Altmann and Math4Science Founder Justine Henning spoke with juniors and seniors at Harvest Collegiate High School, in Manhattan. These conversations took place on Monday, April 24th, as part of our M4S@School program and Harvest’s Career Day. M4S also provides Harvest with an extra pair of hands in two of their math classes, thanks to volunteer Tom Huser, who spends time at Harvest several days each week throughout the school year. A student artist explored the M4S profile of Photographer David Goldes online while a few of her peers asked Altmann what it was like to study baboons… Learn more
Our founder, Justine Henning, has written an essay for Vox.com: Science is why my cancer diagnosis isn’t a death sentence. Today I march for science. The essay connects her own cancer diagnosis with the work of scientists that we feature here at Math4Science, and why she believes in the importance of science. Here are the opening paragraphs: I’ve been thinking frequently this month about Henrietta, my paternal grandmother. I try to imagine what it felt like to be an American Jew in the mid-1940s, with news coming in about what happened to one’s counterparts in Europe. Henrietta and all but… Learn more
Applied Mathematician How can a triangle help mathematicians predict how likely a driver is to choose any one of three different paths to her destination? Which kind of triangle best models that situation? And what does this have to do with computers? Read on to find out. Applied Mathematician Fern Hunt uses probability to help us better understand how computers work, how information and disease spread, and patterns in certain kinds of bacteria. The mathematical tools she applies to her work include Markov chains, vertex covers, greedoids, and other complicated ways of analyzing information. Below, you will learn about one… Learn more