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October 14, 2015

Speaker: Sina Shahandeh, Terapeak Inc.
Title: From unequal growth of polycrystalline grains to unequal e-commmerce markets
Abstract: Many curious problems in Materials Science seem simple at first but they require complex mathematical models to explain. One of such problems is evolution of grain structure in polycrystalline materials or foams. Each grain in 3D has many faces in which it shares a grain boundary with other grains. In a polycrystalline materials neighboring grains compete for space and bigger grains grow at the expense of their smaller neighbours. This dynamics is easy to formulate in two dimension but much more complex in three dimensional reality. This talk presents application of phase field models for large scale simulation of grain growth. We will then discuss how to analyze the results and explain the growth process.

The talk then detours to considering interesting societal dynamics that resemble materials science problems. For example, the revenue that merchants generate in a given market presents a similar dynamics where in the market competition, few bigger sellers dominate the space at the expense of smaller ones.