Levich Institute Seminar Announcement, 05/08/2012
Tuesday, 05/08/2012
2:00 PM
Steinman Hall, Room #312
(Chemical Engineering Conference Room)

Provost K.R. Sreenivsan
New York University

"The Sinking of the Titanic: How it Shaped the Scientific Career of Sir Geoffrey Ingram Taylor"


Almost exactly one hundred years ago, the ship Titanic, billed as unsinkable, collided with an iceberg on its maiden voyage in the North Atlantic and sank with heavy loss of life. The disaster led the British Government to send an expedition of a small ship, Scotia, to look for icebergs and report their positions by radio methods. The meteorologist on the expedition was Geoffrey Ingram Taylor, then in his mid-twenties. Taylor had started his career on quantum physics but this expedition shaped much of his research well into 1950's during which he became a star scientist. This talk will take the audience through some parts of G.I. Taylor's career, and will be both biographical and scientific in its content.


Educated in India, Australia and the Johns Hopkins University, Katepalli R. Sreenivasan, sixty-one years of age, taught at Yale for twenty-two years from 1979, as the Harold W. Cheel Professor of Mechanical Engineering from 1988, later holding joint appointments in the Departments of Physics, Applied Physics and Mathematics. Between 1987 and 1992, he was the Chair of the Mechanical Engineering Department and, in 1989, (the equivalent of) the Acting Dean of Engineering and Applied Science. In 2002, desiring to learn how a public university works, he moved to the University of Maryland as Distinguished University Professor, Glenn L. Martin Professor of Engineering and Professor of Physics, and served for a year and a half as the Director of the Institute for Physical Science and Technology. He was then appointed as the Director of the International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Trieste, Italy, www.ictp.it, where he holds a concurrent professorship in the name of the Centerís founding director, the late Nobel Laureate Abdus Salam. He has been a visiting professor at Caltech, Rockefeller University, Cambridge University, and the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, among others. Dr. Sreenivasan is currently Senior Vice Provost for Science/Technology for the Global Network University as well as Provost of the Polytechnic Institute of NYU.


Dr. Sreenivasanís research expertise is fluid dynamics in a broad sense, and has touched a few other areas of applied physics. While at NYU, he has continued his research in the areas of turbulence, complex fluids, cryogenic helium, and nonlinear dynamics.