The number of women who have excelled in mathematics is lamentably small. Many reasons may be given, foremost being that the rules of society well into the twentieth century debarred women from any leading role in mathematics and indeed in science. But a handful of women broke through the gender barrier and made major contributions. [TM070: search for “thatsmaths” at irishtimes.com ]

Continue reading ‘Emmy Noether’s beautiful theorem’## Posts Tagged 'Mechanics'

### Emmy Noether’s beautiful theorem

Published June 18, 2015 Irish Times Leave a CommentTags: Algebra, Mechanics

### Falling Bodies [2]: Philae

Published November 27, 2014 Occasional Leave a CommentTags: Astronomy, Mechanics

The **ESA Rosetta Mission**, launched in March 2004, rendezvoused with comet 67P/C-G in August 2014. The lander Philae touched down on the comet on 12 November and came to rest after bouncing twice (the harpoon tethers and cold gas retro-jet failed to fire).

### Falling Bodies [1]: Sky-diving

Published November 13, 2014 Occasional Leave a CommentTags: Fluid Dynamics, Geophysics, Mechanics

Aristotle was clear: heavy bodies fall faster than light ones. He arrived at this conclusion by pure reasoning, without experiment. Today we insist on a physical demonstration before such a conclusion is accepted. Galileo tested Aristotle’s theory: he dropped bodies of different weights simultaneously from the Leaning Tower of Pisa and found that, to a good approximation, they hit the ground at the same time.

### Light Weight (*)

Published October 30, 2014 Occasional Leave a CommentTags: Applied Maths, Astronomy, Mechanics, Physics

Does light have weight? Newton thought that light was influenced by gravity and, using his laws of motion, we can calculate how gravity bends a light beam. The effect is observable during a total eclipse of the sun: photographs of the sky are compared with the same region when the sun is elsewhere and a radial displacement of the star images is found. But the amount predicted by Newton’s laws is only half the observed value.

### “Come See the Spinning Globe”

Published August 7, 2014 Irish Times Leave a CommentTags: Mechanics, Physics

*That’s Maths* in *The Irish Times* this week (TM050, or Search for “thatsmaths” at irishtimes.com) is about how a simple pendulum can demonstrate the rotation of the Earth.

Does quantum mechanics matter at everyday scales? It would be very surprising if quantum effects were to be manifest in a macroscopic system. This has been claimed for the problem of balancing a pencil on its tip. But the behaviour of a tipping pencil can be explained in purely classical terms.

### Clothoids Drive Us Round the Bend

Published April 17, 2014 Irish Times Leave a CommentTags: Euler, Geometry, Mechanics, modelling

The article in this week’s *That’s Maths* column in the* Irish Times* ( TM043 ) is about the mathematical curves called clothoids, used in the design of motorways.

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