We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Otherwise, we'll assume you're OK to continue.

Durham University

Institute of Advanced Study

Past Events

IAS Fellow's Public Lecture - Scaling Matters: patterns by design from patterns of the divine

31st January 2017, 17:30 to 18:30, Sir James Knott Hall, Trevelyan College, Professor Ranga Narayanan, University of Florida


Pattern generation in the sciences abound in materials processing, earth sciences, ecology and theoretical biology and even encompass fields well outside of the sciences. For example, scales and associated patterns in space and time are relevant in fields such as economics where competition between time-scales of supply and demand, or between controls and free-markets leads to cyclical patterns in time. Another beautiful example of patterns in space is seen in the “Sky and Water” painting of Escher where smooth morphological transitions emanate from an artist’s ingenuous ability to connect patterns and scale in an almost seamless manner.

Pattern formation in nature and in the physical sciences is intimately connected with nonlinear interaction of competing length scales. Nature’s patterns often occur spontaneously while engineered patterns must be carefully manipulated. Yet there is a way to relate the two. Physicists and engineers do this by an invention called a dimensionless group. In this talk Professor Ranga Narayanan shall introduce such groups to consider several instances where patterns by design emulate nature’s patterns – the patterns of the divine.

This lecture is free and open to all.

Details about Professor Ranga Narayanan

Directions to Sir James Knott Hall, Trevelyan College

Map - Trevelyan College is denoted as building No. 9

Contact for more information about this event.