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Department of Physics and Astronomy
University of Mississippi


Event Information:

  • Tue

    Colloquium: Coming Together - Individuals at Different Scales Working for A Common Goal

    4:00 pmLewis Hall 101

    Andrea Welsh
    School of Physics
    Georgia Institute of Technology

    Coming Together: Individuals at Different Scales Working for A Common Goal

    Patterns in time and space are ubiquitous in everyday life, from the formation of structure by cell morphogenesis, to the coloration of animal's skin and fur, to the construction of large sand dunes from the driving and dissipation of the environment. My thesis can be classified into two threads: investigating the formations of patterns by the collective motion of systems — such as swarms of brine shrimp and human spiral waves — and the exploration of “chimera states,” a spatio-temporal pattern with more than one distinct behavior, both of which occur in biologically-relevant models of excitable tissue. I use a combination of computer simulation, mathematical methods, and table-top experiments to study these instances of pattern formation and learn how they are formed in biological systems, as well as the relevant physical parameters that control what sort of patterns are formed. Investigation of these systems have important consequences in how we understand our world, quantify and predict their dynamics and gain insights on why some patterns are physically chosen over others, and how to control them for our benefit.