Geometric variational problems (13w5070)


Jingyi Chen (University of British Columbia)

Ailana Fraser (University of British Columbia)

Tobias Lamm (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology)


The Banff International Research Station will host the "Geometric variational problems" workshop from June 23rd to June 28th, 2013.

The proposed workshop provides a platform for researchers around the world to discuss exciting new developments in some important areas in geometry, especially minimal surfaces and Willmore surfaces. It will promote the exchange of ideas for future research directions and initiate potential collaboration.

Minimal surfaces exist in our daily life. A simple physical example of a minimal surface is a soap film. In relativity theory, horizons are described as spherical minimal surfaces. Minimal surfaces are also used in the resolution of a famous century long problem in pure mathematics - the Poincare conjecture. A close relative of minimal surfaces are Willmore surfaces; beyond their own geometric significance, Willmore surfaces have been found useful in the study of theoretical physics and biology (e.g. red blood cells). In general, these objects are difficult to construct mathematically (showing their existence in curved ambient spaces). One focus of the workshop will be on some new existence theories.
Participants of the workshop include experts in the field and postdoctoral fellows and advanced graduate students as well.

The Banff International Research Station for Mathematical Innovation and Discovery (BIRS) is a collaborative Canada-US-Mexico venture that provides an environment for creative interaction as well as the exchange of ideas, knowledge, and methods within the Mathematical Sciences, with related disciplines and with industry. The research station is located at The Banff Centre in Alberta and is supported by Canada's Natural Science and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF), Alberta's Advanced Education and Technology, and Mexico's Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACYT).