Manjul Bhargava was recently in news because he won the Fields Medal awards for the year 2014. The Fields Medal is also known as the Nobel Prize of Mathematics and is awarded to mathematicians who are aged below 40.
Manjul Bhargava was awarded the Fields Medal for his pioneering work on several long standing and important problems in number theory, and for the methods he has introduced to achieve this phenomenal progress, methods that will influence research for years to come.
Professor Manjul Bhargava of Princeton University was recognised for his path-breaking contributions to some of the most famous and difficult problems in Number Theory.
About his theory
Bhargava broke the impasse of 200 years by producing a composition law for cubic and higher degree forms.
Bhargava's PhD thesis concerns a problem going back to Carl Friedrich Gauss, one of the greatest mathematicians in history. In the nineteenth century, Gauss had discovered a fundamental composition law for binary quadratic forms which are homogeneous polynomial functions of degree two in two variables. No formula or law of the Gauss type was known for cubic or higher degree forms.
His elegant solution to the cubic case was inspired by studying slicings of the Rubik's cube. In his PhD thesis of 2001 written under the direction of Professor Andrew Wiles of Princeton University, and in his post-doctoral work, Bhargava established the composition law for cubic forms and extended this to the quartic and the quintic cases as well.
He also used these composition laws to settle a number of classical problems in number theory, including some cases of the Cohen-Lenstra-Martinet conjectures on class groups, as well as the determination of the asymptotic number of quartic and quintic fields having bounded discriminant.
Bhargava's work is making deep inroads in algebraic number theory. The Fields Medal to Bhargava recognises all these path breaking contributions to various celebrated problems in number theory, as well the fundamental new methods that he has introduced.
About Manjul Bhargava
Manjul Bhargava is a Canadian-American mathematician. He is the R. Brandon Fradd Professor of Mathematics at Princeton University and also holds Adjunct Professorships at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, and the University of Hyderabad.
He is known primarily for his contributions to number theory and is also the second SASTRA Ramanujan Prize Winner to receive the Fields Medal, the other being Terence Tao in 2006.
Who: Manjul Bhargava
When: August 2014
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