This dizzying labyrinth will host next years party for maths Nobel prize

first_imgArne Ristesund This dizzying labyrinth will host next year’s party for math’s ‘Nobel’ prize Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country By Allyn JacksonOct. 9, 2018 , 1:10 PM Email Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe When mathematician Hans Munthe-Kaas of the University of Bergen in Norway was asked to help design a new botanical garden for his school, he had absolutely no idea what he could contribute. One year later, he has devised a wonder: a math-based labyrinth (above) that will feature in next year’s celebration for the winner of the Abel Prize.Called the Archimedes Labyrinth, the maze occupies 800 square meters in Adiabata, a rain garden that takes its name from the adiabatic process that occurs when moist sea air is pushed over mountains.To design the labyrinth, Munthe-Kaas started with spirals. He took particular inspiration from the Archimedes spiral, a curve that appears throughout the natural world, including in fiddlehead ferns. He next looked to the symmetrical, infinitely repeating, 2D patterns known as “wallpaper groups,” which can be seen in mosaics common in ancient and medieval buildings, like Spain’s Alhambra. Just two of the 17 wallpaper groups had the spirals he was looking for—those with mirror symmetry, so that they head off in opposite directions wherever they meet. Of those two, one had an underlying lattice of hexagons, the other of squares. Munthe-Kaas chose the hexagons to make the maze “more fun to move within.” In additions, he says hexagons have a more organic feel—think of honeycombs or the shells of tortoises.  The walls of the maze are made of yew trees, including several potted yews that can be moved around to change the arrangement of the maze. And because the labyrinth is so close to the Bergen airport, the striking design can be seen from the air.The unique garden, which opened last weekend, will host part of next year’s celebration for the Abel Prize, often called the “Nobel” of math. Visitors will be invited to solve a puzzle based on clues scattered throughout the maze.For Munthe-Kaas, who coincidentally serves as the current chair of the Abel Prize Committee, the project was great fun—and inspiring. The labyrinth is, he hopes, “something that will remain for hundreds of years.”last_img

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