Mathematic innovator Raoul Bott dies

Jan 09, 2006

Raoul Bott, a mathematician who made innovative contributions to differential geometry and topology, has died at the age of 82.

His family said he died of lung cancer on Dec. 20 in Carlsbad, Calif, The New York Times reported.

The Harvard University mathematician collaborated with Michael Atiyah of the University of Edinburgh to find topological ways of investigating solutions to differential equations.

The collaboration yielded the Atiyah-Bott fixed-point theorem, which in part shows that a mathematical map has a fixed point and also provides a means to count the number of fixed points on a given map, the newspaper said.

Bott was also widely known for the Bott periodicity theorem in 1959, the importance of which some mathematicians have compared to the discovery of the periodic table of the elements.

More recently, his research was directed toward developing mathematical tools to aid physicists working to reconcile theories of general and quantum relativity.

In 1990, the American Mathematical Society awarded Bott its Leroy P. Steele Prize for Lifetime Achievement. He received the National Medal of Science in 1987 and won the Wolf Foundation Prize in Mathematics in 2000.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Luxembourg: a tax haven by any other name? Professor on 'secret' tax deals

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

How the hummingbird achieves its aerobatic feats

2 hours ago

(Phys.org) —The sight of a tiny hummingbird hovering in front of a flower and then darting to another with lightning speed amazes and delights. But it also leaves watchers with a persistent question: How ...

'Mind the gap' between atomically thin materials

3 hours ago

In subway stations around London, the warning to "Mind the Gap" helps commuters keep from stepping into empty space as they leave the train. When it comes to engineering single-layer atomic structures, minding ...

Seychelles poachers go nutty for erotic shaped seed

3 hours ago

Under cover of darkness in the steamy jungles of the Seychelles thieves creep out to harvest the sizeable and valuable nuts of the famous coco de mer palm, and their activities are threatening its long-term ...

Recommended for you

Explainer: What is a small private online course?

58 minutes ago

If you have studied an online course at a university over the past couple of decades, you've probably already experienced a SPOC, or Small Private Online Course. SPOC is a new term for an old concept, which appears to be frustrating members of the distance edu ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.