Коллоквиум лаборатории Чебышева

Внимание! Необычные день и время!

Вторник 15 сентября 17:30 ауд. 14 (14-я линия В.О., 29)

Bernd Kawohl (University of Cologne)

"Convex sets of constant width"

When does a steel pipe have an exactly circular cross section? When it

features constant exterior width from every angle? That could easily be

verified with a big caliper or slide gauge, and this procedure was used in

the process of assembling booster rockets for the space shuttle. The

authors of the corresponding manuals had overlooked that there are

geometric shapes, so-called sets of constant width, that are not circles.

This was a contributing factor to the Challenger disaster in 1986. In my

talk I will point out that these odd sets show up in our daily life, how

their knowledge can be used to drill square holes, and that there are

interesting mathematical questions connected with them. The talk is

directed at a general mathematical audience.