From Flapping Birds to Space Telescopes: The Art and Science of Origami
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Date and Time
Thursday, May 1, 2014 at 7 p.m.
Camino Hall, Shiley Theatre
In this talk, Robert Lang, PhD, will describe how geometric concepts led to the solution of a broad class of origami folding problems – specifically, the problem of efficiently folding a shape with an arbitrary number and arrangement of flaps, and along the way, enabled origami designs of mind-blowing complexity and realism, some of which you’ll see, too.
The algorithms and theorems of origami design have shed light on long-standing mathematical questions and have solved practical engineering problems. Dr. Lang will discuss examples of how origami has enabled safer airbags, Brobdingnagian space telescopes, and more.
About Robert Lang
Robert J. Lang is recognized as one of the foremost origami artists in the world as well as a pioneer in computational origami and the development of formal design algorithms for folding. With a Ph.D. in Applied Physics from Caltech, he has, during the course of work at NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Spectra Diode Laboratories, and JDS Uniphase, authored or co-authored over 100 papers and 50 patents in lasers and optoelectronics as well as authoring, co-authoring, or editing 14 books and a CD-ROM on origami. He is a full-time artist and consultant on origami and its applications to engineering problems but keeps his toes in the world of lasers, most recently as the Editor-in-Chief of the IEEE Journal of Quantum Electronics from 2007–2010. He received Caltech’s highest honor, the Distinguished Alumni Award, in 2009 and was elected a Fellow of the American Mathematical Society in 2013.
Sponsored by - University of San Diego Mathigami Project, “Change” Living Learning Community, College of Arts and Sciences, Provost’s Office, University Galleries, Dolciani Mathematics Enrichment Fund