Monday, 9 November 2020

WIT Winter Webinars

The programme of WIT conferences in 2020 is almost complete, with the exception of the BEM/MRM 43 Conference, which is to take place in early December. For 2021, WIT has, as usual, an outstanding programme composed of 15 conferences that will start in May, most of them already announced on the Web.

We are living in uncertain times, defined by the crisis generated by the COVID-19 pandemic that has disrupted in many ways our social lives and has almost stopped people´s mobility. These circumstances are decreasing the possibilities of in-person networking and interchange of ideas.

WIT always tries to react proactively to each situation and in this case, the Institute has decided to organize a series of free live-streamed webinars, the WIT Winter Webinars, which will take place from December 2020 to April 2021, and will cover the winter months until the start of the 2021 calendar of WIT Conferences.

Each webinar will be devoted to a specific scientific field and will consist of four 20-minute presentations selected among the best papers presented at our 2020 conferences and also include a 30-minute Q&A session at the end to allow attendees to put questions to the presenters.

Registration for the webinars will be free of charge and those interested will be provided with the necessary instructions to register and access the event.

We hope this initiative will increase the dissemination of the best contributions from WIT conferences, show a clear description of the activities of the Institute and encourage senior and junior researchers to attend our future conferences.

Tuesday, 3 November 2020

COVID-19 Update - 2020 Conference Programme overview from our Chief Academic Officer

 

Santiago Hernandez, Chief Academic OfficerThe 2020 programme of WIT conferences is almost complete, with the exception of the BEM/MRM 43 Conference which is to take place in December. The events had been planned in beautiful European cities, in collaboration with well-known universities, in venues that provided a friendly atmosphere for networking and the interchange of ideas among delegates.

Sadly, the COVID-19 pandemic triggered a worldwide health crisis and reduced people´s mobility, resulting in many institutions having to cancel their meetings and conferences. The institute reacted quickly to the crucial situation and promptly arranged a scheme of online events which allowed easy participation for delegates, wherever their location, something that was very important to us, given the fact that WIT conferences attract researchers from many continents.

The Institute is proud to report that the feedback received from our delegates via the post-event questionnaire, given to the delegates requesting their opinion on the event, has provided scores of an average value higher than 4 (in a range from 1 to 5, where 5 is the top score) in terms of quality of the presentations, ease of access to the conference documents and overall rating of the event.

For 2021 WIT has, as usual, an exciting programme of conferences with 15 events, some of which have already been announced on the Web. The dates and venues are described in the information for each conference. Our strong hope is that the pandemic will decline, thus allowing the conferences to take place as in-person events, with the scientific community being in a position to meet again, but in any case, the Institute is truly committed to the safety of the delegates and so we are ready once again to adapt the conferences into online formats as we successfully did this year.

We look forward to your participation in our 2021 conferences and reiterate the sincere wishes of all at WIT for good health for you and your families.

My very best regards

 

Santiago Hernández
Chief Academic Officer
Ashurst Lodge

Friday, 30 October 2020

Blast Effects and Analysis 2020 (Online Short Course)

Overview

Dr Graham Schleyer from the University of Liverpool, School of Engineering recently delivered an online course on Blast Effects and Analysis over three half days to a group of nine participants from the UK, Switzerland, Indonesia, UAE, Spain and Portugal. This course was designed to equip engineers, security consultants and researchers with the knowledge and tools to better understand the effects on the built environment that large dynamic loads can produce from explosion sources. Practical design examples were used throughout with reference to commonly used design manuals and using spreadsheet analysis tools. The course covered the elementary concepts of HE blast loading and response in the far-field domain, and participants were provided with an appreciation of the scope and limitations of analytical and numerical methods for modelling these types of problems. The participants especially appreciated the condensed overview of an important area to the safety and security of the built environment as well as the opportunity to interact and network with others on the course. 


Course Sessions

The course consisted of six sessions (over 3 half days):

  • Introduction, general considerations & blast effects
  • Blast loading calculations
  • Single-degree-of-freedom (SDOF) analysis methods
  • SDOF spreadsheet analysis tools
  • Design of structural steel members under blast loading
  • Design of RC structural members under blast loading & round-up


Presenter

Dr Graham Schleyer

Dr Graham Schleyer CEng, FIMechE, SFHEA is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Engineering and a member of the Impact Research Centre at the University of Liverpool, having worked previously for several years in the gas industry and for shorter periods with leading consultancies in the UK and the US. Over the past 30 years or so he has conducted hundreds of field and laboratory tests on full-size and sub-scale structures involving gas, HE and pressurized air explosions which have provided fundamental insights into the explosion resistance of steel, RC and glazing as well as validation of numerical models and simplified analytical methods.

Dr Schleyer is co-chair of the International Conference 'Structures Under Shock and Impact' (SUSI) organised by the Wessex Institute. He is a previous Royal Academy of Engineering Global Research Award holder (formerly Engineering Foresight Awards) and has published widely in journals, conference proceedings, and government and industry reports.


For further information and details of the next event please contact:

Jane Chantler
Wessex Institute
Ashurst Lodge, Ashurst
Southampton, SO40 7AA

Tel: 44 (0) 238 029 3223

Fax: 44 (0) 238 029 2853

jchantler@wessex.ac.uk


Blast Effects and Analysis 2020 Screenshot



Tuesday, 14 January 2020

Prigogine Award 2020 - Postponed to 2021

The Prigogine Medal 2020 Award Ceremony was due to take place at the University of Seville on Wednesday 10th June 2020, during the 28th International Conference on Modelling, Monitoring and Management of Air Pollution (Air Pollution 2020). However, the ceremony has been postponed to 2021 due to the COVID-19 situation. Further details to follow.

The Prigogine Medal was established by the University of Siena and the Wessex Institute of Technology in 2004 to honour the memory of Professor Ilya Prigogine, Nobel Prize Winner for Chemistry

Ilya Prigogine
Ilya Prigogine was born in Moscow in 1917 and obtained his undergraduate and graduate education in chemistry at the Free University in Brussels. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for his contribution to non-equilibrium thermodynamics, particularly the theory of dissipative structures. The main theme of his scientific work was the role of time in the physical sciences and biology. He contributed significantly to the understanding of irreversible processes, particularly in systems far from equilibrium. The results of his work have had profound consequences for understanding biological and ecological systems.

Prigogine’s ideas established the basis for ecological systems research. The Prigogine Medal to honour his memory is awarded annually to a leading scientist in the field of ecological systems. All recipients have been deeply influenced by the work of Prigogine.

Previous Prigogine Laureates:
2004 Sven Jorgensen, Denmark
2005 Enzo Tiezzi, Italy
2006 Bernard Patten, USA
2007 Robert Ulanowicz, USA
2008 Ioannis Antoniou, Greece
2009 Emilio del Giudice, Italy
2010 Felix Müller, Germany
2011 Larissa Brizhik, Ukraine
2012 Gerald Pollack, USA
2013 Vladimir Voeikov, Russia
2014 Mae-wan Ho, UK
2015 Bai-Lian Larry Li, USA
2016 Brian Fath, USA
2017 João Carlos Marques, Portugal
2018 Stuart Kauffman, USA
2019 Luc Montagnier, Switzerland

The 2020 Medal will be awarded to Professor Diederik Aerts, Brussels Free University, Belgium.

Diederik AertsDiederik Aerts
Professor Diederik Aerts graduated with an MSc in Mathematical Physics and holds a PhD in Theoretical Physics from Brussels Free University. For his doctoral research, he worked with Constantin Piron within the so-called ‘Geneva School on the Foundations of Physics’, on the ‘quantum axiomatic description of composite entities’, proving among other things the ‘impossibility of standard quantum theory to model systems of separated entities’.

For his postdoc, Professor Aerts worked at the Belgian National Fund for Scientific Research, where he was also a tenured researcher, and he then became a professor at Brussels Free University (VUB). There, he was the director of the Center Leo Apostel of Interdisciplinary Studies, before becoming emeritus a year ago. He is Editor-in-Chief of the Springer Nature journal ‘Foundations of Science’ and a board member of the Worldviews group, founded by the late philosopher Leo Apostel. He is also president of the Centre for Quantum Social and Cognitive Science (IQSCS) at Leicester University (UK) and a Fellow of the College of the International Institute for Advanced Studies in Systems Research and Cybernetics (IIAS). He was the scientific and artistic coordinator of the ‘Einstein meets Magritte’ conference, at the VUB, where some of the world’s leading scientists and artists gathered to reflect on science, nature, human action and society. This was followed up by two international symposia co-organized with his collaborators and students, ‘Times of Entanglement’ at the World-Exhibition in Shanghai and ‘Worlds of Entanglement’ at the VUB.
Professor Aerts is considered to be one of the pioneers of the research domain called ‘Quantum Cognition’, where quantum structures are used to model aspects of human cognition and decision, a domain in which he is still actively engaged with his group of collaborators and PhD students. Starting from his reflection in the field of quantum cognition, Professor Aerts also formulated a new interpretation of quantum theory, called the ‘conceptuality interpretation’, where quantum entities are considered to be concepts (meaning entities) instead of objects. With his group, he is currently elaborating this challenging approach in all its possible facets and fields of inquiry, as it appears to be able to elucidate fundamental aspects of quantum theory, such as uncertainty, indistinguishability, entanglement and superposition, which have not yet found a satisfactory explanation in existing quantum interpretations.

To find out more about Professor Aerts please view his full CV here: Diederik Aerts CV

Special Prigogine Lecture
on
A Quantum Quest. From operational quantum axiomatics to quantum conceptuality, or how to unveil meaning in reality

to be delivered by Professor Diederik Aerts
at the University of Seville, Spain, on Wednesday 10th June 2020

Highlights of his research are outlined leading to the formulation of a new interpretation of quantum mechanics, called the ‘conceptuality interpretation’. In this new thought-provoking interpretation quantum entities are considered to be concepts instead of objects and fundamental quantum phenomena, such as Heisenberg uncertainty, indistinguishability, entanglement and superposition, which cannot be addressed in a satisfactory way in the existing interpretations, find a very natural explanation. The interpretation also provides interesting insights as regards the possible nature of the world in which we live and evolve.

The full lecture abstract can be found here: Special Prigogine Lecture - Diederik Aerts

For further information about the Prigogine Awards, please contact:

Prigogine Award
Wessex Institute
Ashurst Lodge, Ashurst
Southampton
SO40 7AA, UK

Tel: +44 (0) 238 029 3223
Email: wit@wessex.ac.uk

See the following Web pages for details of recent Prigogine Awards:
Further details of all Prigogine Awards can be found on our dedicated page: Prigogine Award

Monday, 14 October 2019

Prigogine Award 2019 Ceremony

The Prigogine Medal 2019 Award Ceremony took place at the Polytechnic University of Valencia on Wednesday 2nd October, during the second day of the 13th International Conference on Urban Regeneration and Sustainability (Sustainable City 2019).

The Prigogine Medal was established by the University of Siena and the Wessex Institute of Technology in 2004 to honour the memory of Professor Ilya Prigogine, Nobel Prize Winner for Chemistry

ILYA PRIGOGINE
Ilya Prigogine was born in Moscow in 1917, and obtained his undergraduate and graduate education in chemistry at the Free University in Brussels. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for his contribution to non-equilibrium thermodynamics, particularly the theory of dissipative structures. The main theme of his scientific work was the role of time in the physical sciences and biology. He contributed significantly to the understanding of irreversible processes, particularly in systems far from equilibrium. The results of his work have had profound consequences for understanding biological and ecological systems.

Prigogine’s ideas established the basis for ecological systems research. The Prigogine Medal to honour his memory is awarded annually to a leading scientist in the field of ecological systems. All recipients have been deeply influenced by the work of Prigogine.

Previous Prigogine Laureates:
2004 Sven Jorgensen, Denmark
2005 Enzo Tiezzi, Italy
2006 Bernard Patten, USA
2007 Robert Ulanowicz, USA
2008 Ioannis Antoniou, Greece
2009 Emilio del Giudice, Italy
2010 Felix Müller, Germany
2011 Larissa Brizhik, Ukraine
2012 Gerald Pollack, USA
2013 Vladimir Voeikov, Russia
2014 Mae-wan Ho, UK
2015 Bai-Lian Larry Li, USA
2016 Brian Fath, USA
2017 João Carlos Marques, Portugal
2018 Stuart Kauffman, USA

The 2019 Medal was awarded to Professor Luc Montagnier, 2008 Nobel Prize Winner for Physiology and Medicine.

A press conference was held prior to the event and was well attended by the Spanish Press. See links below for more:
La Vanguardia - The Nobel Luc Montagnier: "The scientific basis of homeopathy is ignored because it silences what bothers the economy"
Levante - The AIDS virus discoverer defends homeopathy in Valencia
Las Provincias - Luc Montagnier collects the Prigogine Medal

National newspapers:
La Razon - Nobel Prize Montagnier: “Many young people are not aware of the risk of AIDS”
El Mundo - A Nobel champion of homeopathy receives a medal at the Polytechnic University of Valencia

Polytechnic University of Valencia news channel:
Nobel laureate Luc Montagnier at the UPV (YouTube)

Luc MontagnierLUC MONTAGNIER
Professor Luc Montagnier graduated in Medicine as well as in Biological Sciences at the University of Paris. At the age of 23, he became an Assistant to a Professor there.
After a fruitful post-doctoral stay at two British laboratories, he spent most of his career at two renowned French institutions, namely the Institut Curie and the Institut Pasteur in Paris. At the Institut Pasteur, where he spent almost 30 years, he founded the Viral Oncology Research Unit within the Department of Virology. His focus was cancer viruses, mainly the oncogenic retroviruses, and the biochemical aspects of interferon and malignant transformation, including membrane changes in relation to the growth in soft agar, for which he contributed to the revelation of a new property of cultured malignant cells.

In 1983, Montagnier led the team which first isolated the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV1) and brought the first evidence that this virus was the causative agent of AIDS. In 1985 he isolated the second AIDS virus (HIV2) from West African patients.

Montagnier’s Laboratory was also the first to show that a large percentage of the white blood cells in HIV infected patients were prone to dying by apoptosis, a process of programmed cell death and to attribute its origin to the oxidative stress occurring in the patients, possibly associated with co-infections.

His current work is in the diagnosis and treatment of microbial and viral factors associated with cancers, neurodegenerative and articular diseases, using innovative technologies. As a strong advocate of preventive medicine, he is especially concerned with prolonging the active life of ageing people.

Beyond Montagnier’s scientific interest is his deep involvement in helping developing countries to acquire knowledge of and access to modern and preventive medicine. As President of the World Foundation for Aids Research and Prevention, he has co-founded two Centres for the prevention, treatment, research and diagnosis of AIDS patients in Ivory Coast and Cameroon.

Ten years ago, Professor Montagnier co-founded CHRONIMED, an international group of physicians treating chronic diseases including, but not limited to, Autism spectrum diseases, Alzheimers, Lyme, Multiple Scleroses and Cancer.

Various treatment modalities are used for these multi-factorial conditions. Most of these treatments were developed upon the research of Montagnier and his Chronimed associates.

At its premises in Geneva, Switzerland, Fondation Luc Montagnier, together with its associated Chronimed clinicians, carries out cutting edge research and treatments, bringing in international investigators in various fields.

Luc Montagnier has been awarded many Prizes, including Prizes Rosen (1971), Gallien (1985), Korber (1986), Jeantet (1986), the Lasker Prize in Medicine (1986), the Gairdner Prize (1987), Santé Prize (1987), Japan Prize (1988), King Faisal Prize (1993), Amsterdam Foundation Prize (1994), Warren Alpert Prize (1998), Prince of Asturias Award (2000) the induction to the National Invention Hall of Fame (2004). He is Commandeur de l'Ordre National du Mérite (1986) and Grand Officier of the Legion of Honour (2009).

In 2008, he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physiology and Medicine, for his discovery of HIV, together with Françoise Barre-Sinoussi.

He is the author or co-author of 350 scientific publications and of more than 150 patents.

SPECIAL PRIGOGINE LECTURE
on
New Paradigm in Biology
delivered by Professor Luc Montagnier
at the Polytechnic University of Valencia, Spain, on Wednesday 2nd October 2019.

Despite impressive progress in molecular biology, major problems remain unsolved in this complex science, and their solution, which is vital for our future, may require the contribution of other domains such as the quantum field theory of physics.

For further information about the Prigogine Awards, please contact:
Prigogine Award
Wessex Institute
Ashurst Lodge, Ashurst
Southampton
SO40 7AA, UK
Tel: +44 (0) 238 029 3223
Email: wit@wessex.ac.uk

See the following Web pages for details of recent Prigogine Awards:
Further details of all Prigogine Awards can be found on our dedicated page: Prigogine Award

View photos of the ceremony

Monday, 12 August 2019

The Brebbia Foundation Award 2019

Second Lieutenant Dogour
The Brebbia Foundation instituted a new prize in 2017, awarded annually to the best graduate of the branch of Engineering at the Military College of Argentina (Colegio Militar de la Nación).

The objective of the Brebbia Foundation is to promote advances in sciences and engineering, including training and research. It also aims to encourage new generations to study engineering sciences.

Second Lieutenant Andrés Ignacio Dogour

The 2019 Brebbia Foundation Award was given during the 149th Officer Graduation Ceremony of the Military College. Second Lieutenant Andrés Ignacio Dogour, won the prize for obtaining the best academic marks in the Engineering branch. It was presented to him by the Director of the Military College, General Roberto Agüero.

In a message of appreciation, Second Lieutenant Dogour wrote:

“It is my pleasure to express my gratitude to your organization for the award given to me through the Military College.

I consider such a prize as a great stimulus for the institution, since it is a source of motivation for the cadets to increase their knowledge and capacities as military men; and for me also, because it encourages me to go ever further.

To achieve a high-quality education in order to become the best possible leader, great motivation is required. Resources like this are used by students who go through this process to enable them to reach the point where they can make a solid commitment to the army's objectives and our nation.

That is why the attitude shown by your organization is not a small detail, but a significant input for the future Argentinian Junior Officers, and therefore, a contribution to the country that we serve with our lives.”

 Second Lieutenant Dugour Award Presentation

Friday, 9 August 2019

George Green Medal 2019 Ceremony

George Green Medal
The George Green Medal was established by the University of Mississippi at Oxford, Mississippi, USA, and the Wessex Institute and is supported by Elsevier. It is in honour of the man who single-handedly set up the basis for the modern Boundary Element Method, among other notable achievements.
The Medal is awarded to those scientists who have carried out original work with practical applications in the field of Boundary Elements and other Mesh Reduction Methods, continuing in this manner to further develop the pioneering ideas of George Green. They are also persons of the highest integrity who, by sharing their knowledge, have helped to establish research groups all around the world. The Medal is given once a year and is presented during the BEM/MRM Conference.

ITeCons, Coimbra, Portugal – 2nd July 2019

The George Green Medal 2019 was presented on the occasion of the 42nd International Conference on Boundary Elements and other Mesh Reduction Methods (BEM/MRM 42). The ceremony took place during a special session on Tuesday 2nd July, followed by a keynote address from the medal recipient.

Professor Zhenhan Yao

Prof Yao Zhenhan
The recipient of the 2019 Medal was Professor Zhenhan Yao, Director of the Institute of Solid Mechanics at Tsinghua University in Beijing until his retirement in 2003.
Professor Yao graduated from Tsinghua University in Solid Mechanics in 1966 and became a lecturer at that institution. In 1989 he was promoted to full professor. His research interests are in computational solid mechanics, especially boundary element methods, which he has studied for 40 years and obtained a series of achievements from the theory of conventional BEM to the fast multipole BEM and boundary-type meshless method. In recent years, by reflecting on why BEM has been gradually marginalised in engineering applications, he presented a new High-Accuracy BEM and High-Performance BEM, and taken the local stress analysis of the real beam, plate and shell structure as the breakthrough point to continue to give play to its advantages. He has made a relentless effort to make BEM an indispensable supplement to the FEM.
He has supervised 35 PhD and 20 MSc degrees and has over 300 publications in journals and proceedings of national and international conferences. He has published a book on BEM and FM-BEM in Chinese. He has chaired the China National Conference on Boundary Elements in Engineering many times and is one of the founders of the Asia-Pacific International Conference on Computational Methods in Engineering (ICOME). He is an Associate Editor of the International Journal on Engineering Analysis with Boundary Elements (EABE).

Keynote Presentation

“Basic ideas and research progress of a new High-Accuracy and High-Performance Boundary Element Method”
Zhenhan Yao, School of Aerospace Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China
Abstract
The accuracy verification of BEM often depends on comparing BEM results with those obtained from the respective FEM solution. As a consequence, the engineering community may take the view that since the results obtained by the BEM are consistent with those obtained by the FEM, it is more convenient to apply the widely used FEM.
In view of the above problem, the basic idea of error analysis for numerical simulation of practical engineering problems was introduced, abandoning the dependence on FEM for accuracy verification. Based on Rizzo type boundary integral equation, a new High-Accuracy BEM (HABEM) was proposed for the elastic static problem. In HABEM, the accuracy verification is reduced to the effective control of the calculation error (mainly the integration error) and the discretization error. Taking the bending of a cantilever thin-plate beam under generalized plane stress as benchmark problem, the advantages of the BEM in reducing dimension and high precision have been shown and then, taking the 3D analysis of the same problem as a benchmark problem, a HABEM for 3D analysis has been established. In addition to the elasticity problems, the extension of this approach to other problems such as acoustic problems has been tried.
On this basis, a fast algorithm was further introduced and the additional errors of the fast algorithm and the iterative solver of linear algebraic equations were controlled to develop the High-Performance BEM (HPBEM). For some simple problems, it could be seen that introducing the ACA fast algorithm and iterative solver GMRES has greatly improved the computational efficiency and expanded the solution scale. However, the iterative solution is difficult to converge for the thin cantilever square plate and slender cantilever beam. This key problem in the development of HPBEM is solved by observing that, for the slender beam and thin plate without local stress concentration, the discretization error can be controlled satisfactorily by subdividing a few elements, provided enough high-order elements are used. However, if lower-order elements are used, many more elements should be subdivided.

Previous Laureates

Details of the previous George Green Medal presentations can be found in the conference reports listed below:

George Green (1793-1841)

George Green was a self-taught genius who mysteriously delivered one of the most influential mathematics and physics works of all time. He educated himself in mathematics and self-published the work “An Essay on the Application of Mathematical Analysis to the Theories of Electricity and Magnetism”. In his very first article he derived the Green’s first, second and third identities, forged the concept of Green’s function, and solved the problem of electrical potential created by a single charge placed inside a spherical metal shell. The ideas of Green’s function forever changed the landscape of science, as many physics and mathematics problems have been solved using this technique. As Green died early, and his work was discovered only posthumously, it remains a mystery today how Green could produce such a masterpiece without the guidance of a great teacher or school and, in fact, without a formal education. Only recently, due to the advent of powerful computers, has it been possible to take full advantage of Green’s pioneering developments.

For further information about the George Green Medal please contact:
George Green Medal
Wessex Institute
Ashurst Lodge, Ashurst
Southampton
SO40 7AA, UK
Tel: +44 (0) 238 029 3223
Email: wit@wessex.ac.uk