Jess & Mildred Fisher College of Science & Mathematics

Department of Mathematics

Undergraduate Student Research

2012 Regional Undergraduate Mathematics Research Conference

March 31, 2012
Towson University

The Undergraduate Mathematics Research Conference at Towson was a one-day meeting designed to promote undergraduate research in mathematics by showcasing completed original research, selected expository presentations, as well as research projects in progress. If you are an undergraduate student or a high-school student who has participated in an original research project, you were invited to give a presentation about your research. The web page Advice for Presenters offers information about the length of the talk, the physical facilities, and some links to website for helpful hints in preparing your presentation.

In addition to student presentations, the conference featured a short tutorial on LaTeX, information sessions on graduate schools, summer research opportunities, and industry employment.

There were two invited talks. One talk was given by Dr. Lawrence Washington, Professor and Mathematics Graduate Director at University of Maryland, College Park.

Cannonballs, Donuts, and Secrets:
From Idle Questions to Cryptographic Applications

picture of a cannon ball, a donut and a combination lock Elliptic curves, which have a rich history going back almost two thousand years, have recently found widespread applications in cryptography. In fact, you probably use elliptic curves several times each week. We'll start with a gentle introduction to elliptic curves, and then discuss applications along with some historical comments. (See poster.)

Drs. Thomas Corwin and Jeffrey Silver, mathematicians working for Metron Incorporated, gave the second invited talk about how mathematics was used in the search for SS Central America.

Ship of Gold: Mathematical Treasure Hunting
and the Search for the SS Central America

Painting of the sinking of the SS Central America In 1857, while carrying passengers and gold from California to New York, the SS Central America encountered a September hurricane. In spite of heroic efforts by the passengers and crew, the ship sank taking 3 tons of gold bars and coins to the ocean bottom 8000 feet below. This talk will present an overview of the mathematical methods used in this search and recovery operation. (See the full text of the abstract.)

This schedule link provides the times and presentations for this conference.

Support for this conference was provided by National Science Foundation grant DMS-0846477 through the Regional Undergraduate Mathematics Conferences program of the Mathematical Association of America. Additional support is provided by the Department of Mathematics at Towson University, and the Mathematics Club at TU.

We are also grateful to the following organizations for providing prizes to conference participants:

McGraw-Hill Logo McGraw-Hill Higher Education
Springer science plus business logo Springer Science+Business Media
John Wiley Logo John Wiley
Zometool Logo Zometool


2012 Undergraduate Mathematics Research Conference
Conference Poster




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