1 | Name: | Dr. Peter D. Lax | |

Institution: | New York University | ||

Year Elected: | 1996 | ||

Class: | 1. Mathematical and Physical Sciences | ||

Subdivision: | 104. Mathematics | ||

Residency: | Resident | ||

Living? : | Living | ||

Birth Date: | 1926 | ||

Peter D. Lax is a most distinguished mathematician who has earned renown for his contributions in both pure and applied mathematics. One of many methods named after him is Lax pairs, which came from his analysis of fluid dynamics. His name is connected with many major mathematical results and numerical methods, including the Lax equivalence theorem, Lax-Friedrichs scheme, Lax-Wendroff scheme, Lax entropy condition, and Lax-Levermore theory. His work covers all aspects of partial differential equations. In linear theory it includes his fundamental oscillatory approximation for solving hyperbolic equations, which led to the theory of Fourier Integral Operators. His famous collaboration with R.S. Phillips involves extremely deep work in scattering theory and connects with problems on automorphic functions in hyperbolic geometry. Dr. Lax has also done basic work in numerical analysis for partial differential equations. In nonlinear theory he has done fundamental work on shock waves, and on KdV equations: completely integrable systems possessing solition solutions. A native of Hungary, Dr. Lax earned his Ph.D. from New York University in 1949 and has served at NYU's Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences since 1958. He has also directed the Courant Mathematics and Computing Lab and is currently Professor of Mathematics Emeritus. Dr. Lax has won many honors such as the Chauvenet Prize (1974), the National Medal of Science (1986), the Wolf Prize (1987), the Abel Prize (2005) and membership in the American Academy of Arts & Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences. Dr. Lax is the author of numerous works, including textbooks on functional analysis, linear algebra, calculus and partial differential equations. |