Kenneth M. Golden is a Professor of Mathematics and Adjunct Professor of Bioengineering at the University of Utah. His scientific interests lie in sea ice, climate change, composite materials, phase transitions, inverse problems and remote sensing. He has published papers in mathematics, physics, geophysics, oceanography, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, and biomechanics journals, and given over 400 invited lectures on six continents, including three presentations in the US Congress. Golden has journeyed seven times to Antarctica and ten times to the Arctic to study sea ice. In 2011 he was selected as a Fellow of the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics for "extraordinary interdisciplinary work on the mathematics of sea ice," and in 2013 he was an Inaugural Fellow of the American Mathematical Society. Professor Golden received the University of Utah's highest award for teaching in 2007 and for research in 2012. In 2014 Golden was elected as a Fellow of the Explorers Club. His polar expeditions and mathematical work have been covered in over 40 newspaper, magazine, and web articles, including profiles in Science, Science News, and Scientific American. He has also been interviewed numerous times on radio and television, and featured in videos produced by the National Science Foundation and NBC.
His lecutures will be given April 21st and 22nd, both from 3:30-4:30 in Gore Hall 116. Their subjects and abstracts are as follows:
Title: Modeling the Melt: What Math Tells Us About the Disappearing Polar Ice Caps
Abstract: The precipitous loss of Arctic sea ice has far outpaced expert predictions. In this lecture we will explore the mathematical underpinnings of this mystery, and show how we are using mathematical models of composite materials and statistical physics to study key sea ice processes. This work is helping to advance how sea ice is represented in climate models, and improve projections of the fate of Earth's ice packs and the polar ecosystems they support. We will conclude with a short video from a recent Antarctic expedition.
Title: Homogenization for Sea Ice
Abstract: Earth's sea ice packs are key players in the climate system and critical indicators of climate change, as evidenced by the recent precipitous losses of summer Arctic sea ice. As a material, frozen sea water is a polycrystalline composite of a pure ice matrix containing brine inclusions whose volume fraction and connectivity depend strongly on temperature. Fluid transport through sea ice mediates key climatological and biological processes, and can enhance thermal transport via convection in the porous microstructure. In this lecture I will discuss mathematical models of composite materials and statistical physics that we have been using to describe the effective fluid, thermal, and electromagnetic transport properties of sea ice, and to address other problems in sea ice physics such as the evolution of melt ponds on the sea ice surface. I will cover a range of mathematical techniques, including percolation theory, forward and inverse homogenization, integral representations for effective transport coefficients of composite media, spectral measures and random matrix theory, advection diffusion processes, and Ising models. These models have been developed in conjunction with our field experiments in the Arctic and Antarctic.