SNP Meeting/IMA PI Conference in Tribute to James Serrin

SNP Meeting/IMA PI Conference:
Mathematics and Mechanics in the Physical Sciences
A Tribute to James Serrin

University of Minnesota
Minneapolis, MN
Thursday, November 14 – Saturday, November 16, 2013


Roger Fosdick University of Minnesota
Chi-Sing Man University of Kentucky
Peter J. Olver University of Minnesota



We are pleased to acknowledge the support of the following institutions:

Society for Natural Philosophy;
Department of Aerospace Engineering and Mechanics, University of Minnesota;
School of Mathematics, University of Minnesota;
Institute for Mathematics and its Applications, University of Minnesota;
Office of the Dean, College of Science and Engineering, University of Minnesota.

The Society for Natural Philosophy, founded in 1963 by the late Clifford Truesdell, nourishes specific research aimed at the unity of mathematical and physical science. It seeks to recognize and promote work of high quality. Additional information about the Society is available at


Scientific Program

This joint meeting of the Society for Natural Philosophy (SNP) and the School of Mathematics, University of Minnesota, is dedicated as a special tribute to the late James Serrin (1926–2012), a mathematician and natural philosopher whose deep and profound contributions in partial differential equations, calculus of variations, real analysis, fluid mechanics, and foundations of thermodynamics are works of the highest quality that exemplify the unity of mathematical and physical science. It will bring together researchers of international and national stature as well as recent Ph.D.'s and graduate students who either share the common experience of having been immensely influenced by Serrin's teachings, writings, and other scientific activities or deeply value the dialogue and interaction between mathematics and mechanics as Serrin did. It will emphasize the creation and development of new mathematical methods and rational physical concepts to address critical problems arising in the modeling, analysis, and prediction of material behavior.

More specifically, the objectives of the joint meeting are:


List of Invited Speakers

P. Bauman Purdue U.
L. Caffarelli U. Texas Austin
C. Calderer U. Minnesota
I. FonsecaCarnegie Mellon U.
E. Fried U. Washington
M. E. Jabbour U. Kentucky
C. Kenig U. Chicago
S. Mayboroda U. Minnesota
R. Paroni U. Sassari
L. A. PeletierLeiden U.
P. Podio-Guidugli U. Roma 2
P. PucciU. Perugia
M. Šilhavý Akademie věd ČR
V. SverakU. Minnesota
E. VirgaU. Pavia


Schedule and Abstracts

All talks will be given in Keller Hall (map) 3-180, University of Minnesota.

Thursday, November 14


9:30–10:30 C. Calderer (University of Minnesota)
James Serrin, The Applied Mathematician (abstract)
10:30–11:00 Break

11:00–12:00 P. Podio-Guidugli (University of Rome, Tor Vergata)
Some Thoughts about the Format of Continuum Thermodynamics

1:30–2:30 C. Kenig (University of Chicago)
Soliton Resolution for Nonlinear Wave Equations (abstract)
2:30–3:00 M. Šilhavý (Mathematical Institute of the Czech Republic)
Phase Transitions with Interfacial Energy: Interface Null Lagrangians, Polyconvexity, and Existence (abstract)
3:00–3:30 P. Belik (Augsburg College)
Fractal Powers in Serrin's Swirling Vortex Solutions (abstract)

4:00–4:30 P. Pucci (University of Perugia)
Existence of Entire Solutions for Elliptic Problems Involving the Fractional Laplacian (abstract)
4:30–5:30V. Sverak (University of Minnesota)
On Serrin's Weak-Strong Uniqueness Theorem for the Navier-Stokes Equation (abstract)

Friday, November 15

9:00–10:00 E. Virga (University of Pavia)
Curvature Potentials on Nematic Shells (abstract)
10:00–10:30 S. Mayboroda (University of Minnesota)
Localization of Eigenfunctions (abstract)

11:00–12:00 E. Fried (University of Washington)
Stability and Bifurcation of Flexible Filaments Spanned by Fluid Films (abstract)

1:30–2:00I. Fonseca (Carnegie Mellon University)
Variational Methods in Materials and Image Processing (abstract)
2:00–2:30 N. Kirby (University of Washington)
The Gamma-limit of a Model for the Elastic Energy of an Inextensible Ribbon (abstract)

3:00–4:00 L. Caffarelli (University of Texas at Austin)
Homogenization of a Front Driven by Forcing and Curvature (abstract)
4:00–4:30B. Seguin (McGill University)
Stability of a Soap Film in a Cylindrical Tube (abstract)

6:00–9:30 Banquet Dinner
Carlson Dining Room, Carlson School of Management (map)

Saturday, November 16

9:00–10:00 P. Bauman (Purdue University)
Analysis of Defects in Nematic Liquid Crystals Described by Minimizers of De Gennes' Q-Tensor Energy (abstract)
10:00–10:30 M.E. Jabbour (University of Kentucky)
Surface Instabilities during Step-flow Epitaxy. Adatom Electromigration and Elastic Step Interactions Revisited (abstract)
10:30–11:00 N. Admal (University of Minnesota)
A Decomposition of the Atomistic Stress Tensor into an Elastic and a Plastic Component (abstract)

11:30–12:30 L.A. Peletier (Leiden University)
Rational Pharmacology (abstract)
12:30–1:00 R. Paroni (University of Sassari)
Plate Theory for Inhomogeneous, Anisotropic, Linearly Elastic Bodies as a Variational Limit of the Complementary Energy Functional (abstract)


Registration and Banquet Dinner

To facilitate planning, all prospective participants are urged to notify Chi-Sing Man ( by e-mail, as soon as possible, of their intention to attend this meeting. There is no registration fee for current members of the Society for Natural Philosophy. Attendees who are not current members of the Society can pay their registration fee either by joining the Society at this link or by sending a check of $30, made payable to "Society for Natural Philosophy", to Man (Department of Mathematics, University of Kentucky, 715 Patterson Office Tower, Lexington, KY 40506-0027, USA) by October 31, 2013. The registration fee is waived for students.

A banquet dinner will be held in the Carlson Dining Room in the lower level of the Carlson School of Management (map) on the West Bank campus on Friday evening, November 15. The cost is $45 per person, including wine which will be served during the half hour before dinner and during the first half hour of the dinner. There will be a choice of salmon, beef, or vegetarian and the choice can be made on the spot at the dinner. Those (including spouses) who wish to attend the banquet should send a personal check of $45 per person made out to "School of Mathematics", no later than October 31, to the following address:

University of Minnesota
School of Mathematics
127 Vincent Hall
206 Church Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

ATTENTION: Harry Singh

The Carlson Building is an easy walk across the Mississippi River from The Commons Hotel. Transportation will also be arranged from and to the hotel.


Financial Support

This SNP Meeting is co-sponsored by the IMA as an IMA PI Conference. Faculty members, students, and employees of IMA Participating Institutions are eligible to apply for travel support from the IMA PI funds of their home institution. Those interested should direct enquiries to the IMA representative of their home institution.


Hotel Reservations

A block of rooms has been reserved until 31 October 2013 at The Commons Hotel, which is located right on campus, for the attendees of this joint meeting at the special room rate of $124.00 (plus $16.62 tax) per night. To reserve a room, please call +1-800-822-6757 or +1-612-379-8888 and ask for the Serrin Conference, or click this link.


Local Transportation

Taxi fare from the Minneapolis/St. Paul Airport to The Commons Hotel is around $30. The SuperShuttle is $16 one way; click this link to make reservation on the SuperShuttle. Taking light rail and bus ($1.75, or $2.25 during rush hours) is also possible but not convenient right now because of the light rail construction on campus.