Established in 2006, the SIAM award recognizes the projects that explore the ties between mathematics and applications that may not easily fit within a formal engineering, science, or mathematical discipline. Projects that include non-trivial mathematical analysis in the context of an engineering or science problem are considered. Examples of qualifying projects include mathematical analysis of a problem in science or engineering; projects that bridge the gap between math and an application; mathematical methods applied to solving a problem in science or engineering, optimization, scientific computing; or numerical analysis.
Zheng received the prize in recognition of his project titled "Mathematical Modeling of Smoking Effect on Down Syndrome." His entry, which examined the long term effects of smoking on the incidence of Down Syndrome, impressed Kelly Black, a judge and Associate Professor of Mathematics at Union College of Schenectady, New York.
"Mr. Zheng was able to clearly describe the mathematical model and explain the motivations as to how certain terms in the equations had been simplifiedhis project made use of a wide range of skills and techniques," says Black.
"I was partly inspired to select this topic because of my father," says Zheng. "He has done some research in the field of birth defects. I was also motivated to look into this topic by curiosity. Not a lot is known about maternal-age-related defects and I thought that with mathematics I could provide some insight into the problem."
The eleventh grader plans to write and submit an article on his project for publication in a peer-reviewed medical journal. Chang-Jiang (C.J.) Zheng, a physician specia
Contact: Michelle Montgomery
Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics