ICIAM Collatz PrizeOctober 21, 2007
Felix Otto of Universität Bonn received the ICIAM Collatz Prize in Zurich, where he also gave an invited talk, "Pattern Formation in Micromagnetics." Otto "is among the premier applied analysts of his generation," according to the prize citation: He has made "fundamental contributions in areas ranging from micromagnetics, to coarsening rates during phase separation, to mass transportation problems. His work has given these areas a sense of clarity and definitiveness that has gone far beyond the reach of existing heuristic arguments. In a series of papers, some joint with Cantero–Alvarez, Antonio Desimone, Bob Kohn and Stefan Müller, Felix Otto and co-workers have analyzed the Landau–Lifshitz model of micromagnetics in considerable detail." It is through this work that the scaling and the energy landscape of this complex problem are now understood.
Otto's work, the citation concludes, "is a unique combination of deep physical insight, sophisticated scaling and heuristic arguments, and above all deep and interesting analysis. His work is applied analysis at its very best---applying rigorous analysis to clarify issues that were previously confused, and providing fresh insight through the introduction of entirely new models and methods."