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SU mathematician receives SAMS award for excellence in research
Author: Media & Communication, Faculty of Science
Published: 14/01/2020

A professor in Applied Mathematics in the Faculty of Science at Stellenbosch University (SU), Prof André Weideman, was awarded the prestigious 2019 Award for Research Distinction by the South African Mathematical Society (SAMS) in recognition of his important contribution to research in Mathematics in South Africa.

The award, in the form of a silver Mobius band, was presented on 3 December 2019 during the annual SAMS 2019 Congress dinner at the University of Cape Town.

Prof Weideman's research involves the development of fast, stable, and elegant algorithms for solving differential equations and computing of integral transforms and special functions. A software suite that he developed for solving differential equations, for example, is highly cited by researchers in fluid stability and quantum mechanics. Another highly cited paper is on the computation of the plasma dispersion function, a formula used in spectroscopy and astrophysics.

He is actively involved in the South African Numerical and Applied Mathematics Symposium. Over the past 40 years this annual symposium has acquired a solid international reputation with many well-known speakers attending every year. He is an associate editor for the journals Electronic Transactions of Numerical Analysis and Numerical Algorithms and regularly acts as reviewer for the major journals in numerical analysis and scientific computing. He is a member of the SA Academy for Arts and Sciences, and was elected as a Fellow of the Society of Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM) in 2017. In 2019 he was an invited speaker at the International Congress of Industrial and Applied Mathematics (ICIAM) held in Valencia, Spain.

Prof Weideman recently completed a research sabbatical at the Isaac Newton Institute for Mathematical Sciences at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom, where he was one of the main organisers of a programme on Complex Analysis.

Prof Ingrid Rewitzky, Head of the Department of Mathematical Sciences, says this is well-deserved recognition for his outstanding research contributions in the field of numerical analysis and scientific computing.