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The Lavrentiev phenomenon

Prof. Sir John Ball, Queen's College, FRS

Date Icon Week 6, Tuesday 19 November MT 2013
Time Icon 8:15pm

Innocent-looking problems of the calculus of variations can have different minimizers in different spaces of functions. This can lead, for example, to finite-element methods finding the `wrong’ minimizer. Examples of this and related phenomena will be given, and their philosophical implications for models of nature discussed.