MSUM upperclassmen LeAnn Washenberger (Secondary Math Education, Physics minor) and Shouvik Bhattacharya (Physics major, Mathematics minor) participated in the Mathematical Contest in Modeling 2013. They formulated an optimized model, which will allow users to bake brownies without burning them, as the baking pans distribute the heat evenly on their surfaces.
Bhattacharya said, “Heating an ordinary oven requires to hold the principles of thermodynamics, commonly known as convection and conduction process of the heat transfer. Solving a 2D-heat equation involves challenging computations. For example, I modeled the critical meltdown of a nuclear reactor last year for the math modeling class I took. For simplicity, we assumed a one-dimension rod which could prevent the meltdown. Similarly, we simplified the boundary conditions inside the oven by assuming the heat flux works only in one direction.” The MSUM team received an honorable mention in the last year’s contest. Like last year, Dr. Damiano Fulghesu advised this year’s team. The competition was financed by the department of Mathematics at MSUM.