In June 2017, a group of Prof Chris Budd's PhD students (Me (Hayley Wragg), Matthew Griffith, and Susan Kgmotso Morupisi) ventured across the sea, to the west of Bath, all the way to Limerick! Travelling for the 128th European study group with industry. Greeted by stunning Irish countryside (and weather) we arrived at the University of Limerick ready for a week of maths.
For those wondering what an Industry study group actually is, here is a brief overview. Several Industrial Partners present mathematical problems to a group of mathematicians. The mathematicians come from all over the world to spend a week working on the problems together.
How is that different to SAMBa's ITT's? Well, the study groups take place in the university but aren't connected to a CDT like the ITT is. The problems are already formulated at the start of the week and the aim is to get some results by the end. There are more preparation days for the ITT, whereas the study group starts the week it's on.
On our first Monday morning (after some surprisingly good coffee!) the industry partners introduced the problems. There were 5 problems in total. Monday afternoon participants chose their groups and got started on the problems. Work continued until Friday broken up by a guest lecture and study group dinner. Matthew and Susan were both working on a problem modelling vehicle collisions and I was looking at wave propagation through materials.
The guest lecture featured Jacqueline Christmas, who gifted us with an insight into her work modelling ocean waves.
The week finished with a presentation from each group on the work they had completed on the problem (Matthew, Susan and I all presented).
The work didn’t stop after the event though since reports were submitted to the partners within 3 weeks of the event finishing.
But one Industry study group wasn’t enough for the Budd Brigade and in August 2017 a new group of Buddlings formed ( me and Kate Powers). We travelled further west to Montreal in order to test our French (and maths).
Along with Chris we attended the Eighth Montreal Industrial Problem Solving Workshop at the University of Montreal.
With a similar structure to the ESGI, the week begin with problem introductions from the industrial partners on Monday morning. This time there were 9 problems in total. Monday afternoon work began. Kate was looking at friction stir welding; I was looking at registration of hyperspectral images of the retina ; and Chris was looking at data assimilation on hydroelectric power.
Wednesday evening gave visiting participants the chance to visit Old Montreal where we were blessed with views of some of the amazing architecture as well as a walk along the waterfront. Work on the problems kept going until Friday.
All 9 problems were presented to the rest of the participants on the Friday (Chris and I presented), before the Budd Brigade returned to the UK.
The working structure of both study groups was intense but exciting. Discussions with professors, academics and students all working together to, categorise the problem,
work out the maths, and get results at the end of the week. The problems covered many areas of maths, including (but not limited to): fluid dynamics, statistics, probability, computational modelling, and numerical analysis.
I would thoroughly recommend the weeks to all applied mathematicians. Prepare to have a great time whilst getting lots of maths done. It is also essential to carry a SAMBa CDT keep cup at all times.
Anyone feeling inspired to attend a study group in the future can check Maths in Industry for future events.