Roy Kerr


Roy Kerr

Infobox Scientist
name = Roy Kerr


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birth_date =16 May 1934
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nationality = New Zealand
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field = mathematics
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known_for = Kerr vacuum
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Roy Patrick Kerr (born 1934) is a New Zealander mathematician who is best known for discovering the Kerr vacuum, an exact solution to the Einstein field equation of general relativity. His solution models the gravitational field outside an uncharged rotating massive object, including (most famously) a rotating black hole.

Professional history

Kerr's mathematical talent was first recognized while he was still a high school student at St Andrew's College, Christchurch. Although there was no Math teacher there at the time he was able in 1951 to go straight into third year Mathematics at the Canterbury University College of the University of New Zealand, the precursor to the University of Canterbury. Their regulations did not permit him to graduate until 1954 and so it was not until September 1955 that he moved to the University of Cambridge, where he earned his Ph.D. in 1959. His dissertation concerned the difficult problem of the equations of motion in general relativity.

After a stint as a postdoctoral student at Syracuse University, where Einstein's collaborator Peter Bergmann [http://www.aps.org/programs/honors/prizes/prizerecipient.cfm?name=Peter%20G.%20Bergmann&year=2003] [http://www34.homepage.villanova.edu/robert.jantzen/princeton_math/pmcxberg.htm] was professor, he spent some time working for the United States Air Force at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. Kerr speculated that the "main reason why the US Air Force had created a General Relativity section was probably to show the Navy that they could also do pure research." [cite web | title=Discovering the Kerr and Kerr-Schild metrics | publisher=Roy P. Kerr | work=To appear in "The Kerr Spacetime", Eds D.L. Wiltshire, M. Visser and S.M. Scott, Cambridge Univ. Press| url=http://www.arxiv.org/abs/0706.1109 | accessmonthday=June 19 | accessyear=2007 ]

In 1962 Kerr moved to the University of Texas at Austin, where in 1963, he discovered his namesake exact vacuum solution. In 1965, with Alfred Schild, he introduced the concept of Kerr-Schild spacetimes. During his time in Texas, Kerr supervised four Ph.D. students.

In 1971, Kerr returned to the University of Canterbury in New Zealand, where he remained until his retirement in 1993. Kerr retired from his position as Professor of Mathematics at the University of Canterbury in 1993 after having been there for twenty-two years, including ten years as the head of the Mathematics department.

In 2008 Kerr was appointed to the Yevgeny Lifshitz ICRAnet Chair in Pescara Italy.

Awards

* Hughes Medal (1984)
* Marcel Grossmann Award (2006)

References

Notes

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External links

* [http://ifs.massey.ac.nz/mathnews/centrefolds/58/Aug1993.shtml Professor Roy Kerr]
* [http://www.phys.canterbury.ac.nz/people/kerr.shtml University of Canterbury: Roy Kerr]
* [http://www.listener.co.nz/default,2629.sm Man of Mystery]
* [http://scienceworld.wolfram.com/biography/KerrRoy.html Roy Kerr]
* [http://www.icra.it/MG/ Marcel Grossmann meetings]


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  • Roy Kerr — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Roy Patrick Kerr (16 de mayo de 1934 ) es un matemático neozelandés, famoso por haber encontrado en 1963 una solución exacta de la ecuación del campo de la relatividad general, aplicada a un agujero negro en rotación …   Wikipedia Español

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