The Mathematical Sciences faculty are involved in a broad range of research in the areas of pure and applied math, physics, statistics, and education.
Astrophysics, Gravitational Physics, and Optics
Astrophysics involves understanding the nature of stars, galaxies, and the universe on large-scales. Research in our department focuses on gravitational waves and the LIGO project, with a focus on theoretical modeling of gravitational-waves from black holes and neutron stars, and experimental optics relevant to gravitational-wave detection. We are also actively involved in education and outreach activities on behalf of LIGO, including the Sounds of Spacetime project. In cooperation with the North Jersey Astronomical Group, we host a public telescope night during the semester (clear Thursdays, 8-9pm, in front of the Center for Environmental and Life Sciences/CELS).
Biostatistics and Statistics
Statistics research in our department focuses on the development of new statistical methods to study complex data sets. Some of this work has applications in biology or medicine. Our Statistical Consulting Program provides data analysis expertise to the MSU community.
In addition to offering a concentration in financial mathematics, faculty research in this area focuses on modeling financial crises and systemic risk.
Fluid mechanics research at Montclair involves theoretical and experimental modeling of fluid flow and stability in different geometries. Our Complex Fluids Lab houses a flow tank and other equipment to study fluid structure interaction, sedimentation, and viscoelastic flows. Several faculty also study magnetic fluids, ferrofluids, and their applications. Other research involves nematic liquid crystals, cracks/fracturing, and combustion.
Geophysics research at MSU focuses on seismic imaging techniques via inverse scattering algorithms. This involves the development of mathematical tools that can better infer the structure of the Earth’s interior or the location of hydrocarbons from observed seismic data.
Our work in mathematical biology applies tools of complex systems to the study of infections, disease transmission, ecology, population dynamics, and swarm behavior. In conjunction with Montclair’s Center for Quantitative Obesity Research, our faculty also apply mathematical models to problems related to nutrition, weight loss, and health.
Math and Science Education
A wide range of math and science education research is pursued in our department, much of it in conjunction with our PhD program. Faculty research involves studying geometric reasoning, analysis of student thinking, and inquiry-based learning. We have several programs and community partnerships that involve teacher professional development, improving student learning, and the design of innovative curricula.
The science of (bio)medical imaging, how data can be collected, processed, assembled, and presented as an image, how it may be visualized, and how it may be interpreted encompass the foci of this area. In addition, research focuses on the application of biomedical imaging for new methods, techniques, and tools to further understanding of biological mechanisms of human diseases.
Our faculty work on a variety of areas that display complex, nonlinear, or chaotic behavior. This includes the study of stochastic nonlinear systems, the nonlinear Schrodinger equation, solitons, and the application of nonlinear dynamics and perturbation theory techniques to fluids and other areas.
Pure mathematics research in our department includes the areas of graph theory, combinatorics, number theory, algebra, and functional analysis.
For more information about these areas, or to inquire about possible research opportunities for students, contact the indicated faculty.