Abel Prize to be declared today

Niels Henrik Abel, in whose memory the prize was instituted.

The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters will announce the winner of the 2022 Abel Prize, a top honour in the field of mathematics, today at about 4.30 pm IST.

The Abel Prize is named after the Norwegian mathematician Niels Henrik Abel. The prize was instituted in 2002, to commemorate his 200-th birth anniversary.

The Fields Medal and the Abel Prize are the two important international prizes for mathematics. While the Fields Medal honours brilliant work done by a mathematician below the age of forty years, the Abel Prize has no age limit and is more of a lifetime achievement award celebrating important contributions made to a field of mathematics.

The first Abel Prize, awarded in 2003, went to French mathematician Jean-Pierre Serre. The only person of Indian origin to have won this prize is Srinivasa S.R. Varadhan. He is at the Courant Institute, New York University, and won it in 2007. So far, the prize has gone to only one woman mathematician, Karen Keskulla Uhlenbeck of University of Texas, U.S.A.

The prize consists of a citation and a prize money of 7.5 million Norwegian Kroner.

Norway’s Ramanujan

A short film on the tragic story of mathematician Niels Henrik Abel is available on the website of the Abel Prize. Indian math afficionados will see the parallel to the life of Ramanujan.

Abel was a young genius who, when he was just 22, showed the unsolvability of the quintic equation, which had puzzled mathematicians for 250 years. In 1826, he presented an important theorem in Paris; however the manuscript was misplaced. While trying to derive his lost treatise, he contracted tuberculosis and died three years later on April 6, 1829, when he was only 26 years old. Just two days after his death, the Paris treatise was discovered. Now, his discovery forms the mathematical basis for the CT scan. His work is also used today in ECC-cryptography, used for encrypting data online.

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Printable version | Apr 25, 2022 12:12:18 am |