Mathematics

The mathematical link between snowflakes and teeth
Modelling shows that the formula describing crystal growth can also predict enamel distribution. ...
A formula used by mathematicians and physicists to describe the formation of snowflakes is proving equally useful in ...

Conversation
The mathematics of scale
Fractals are critical tool for measuring and understanding how from little things big things grow.
Breathe. As your lungs expand, air fills 500 million tiny alveoli, each a fraction of a millimeter across. As you exh...

History: Einstein’s mathematician
Emmy Noether overcame sexism and antisemitism to become a towering mathematician.
Amalie Emmy Noether was born on 23 March 1882, in the Bavarian city of Erlangen. Her father, Max Noether, was called...

Conversation
Number crunching without fear
Maths anxiety can be made a thing of the past.
It’s fair to say maths is not everyone’s favourite subject. In fact, for many people, the feelings of tension and anx...

Kilogram, amp, and kelvin set to change
A shift from physical artefact to natural constant.
From Monday, 20 May, the official definitions for several units – including the kilogram, the ampere and the kelvin –...

New area for MH370 search?
Mathematical analysis suggests currents push likely crash site further north.
The missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, which disappeared from radar screens in 2014, may have crashed into the o...

The mathematics of hill walking
Big data helps calculate how to climb up slopes.
Lifeanddeath estimations of how fast people in danger can run up a slope are based only “a random Scottish dude fro...

Conversation
The mystery of human sperm tail
A new journal paper reveals mammal sperm evolved reinforcements.
Every time a man ejaculates about 55 million sperm are released. This is equivalent to more than six times the entire...

A mathematician, idolised
GPS collaborator depicted in beautiful artwork.
This is a portrait of mathematician Gladys West, made by an artist called Geneva B who hails from North Carolina. We...

Mathematics could identify species extinction risks
Calculating multiple outcomes will help pinpoint populations at risk, say Fernando Colchero and D...
A critically endangered Kemp’s ridley sea turtle. CREDIT: Shutterstock/JB Manning It’s now possible to predict ho...

Mathematicians zero in on the birth of Hypatia
Probability theory deployed to recalculate the birth date of antiquity’s most famous female schol...
She was born in Egypt, at Alexandria, in an era in which women were not considered equals to men. However, her father...

Science history: the man who tried to measure weather and war
Lewis Fry Richardson believe morality should always trump science. Jeff Glorfeld reports.
Lewis Fry Richardson was one of the first people to apply maths and physics to the science of weather forecasting.Nex...