09.06.2004

**A Purdue University mathematician claims to have proven the Riemann hypothesis, often dubbed the greatest unsolved problem in mathematics.**

Louis De Branges de Bourcia, or de Branges (de BRONZH) as he prefers to be called, has posted a 23-page paper detailing his attempt at a proof on his university Web page. While mathematicians ordinarily announce their work at formal conferences or in scientific journals, the spirited competition to prove the hypothesis – which carries a $1 million prize for whomever accomplishes it first – has encouraged de Branges to announce his work as soon as it was completed.

"I invite other mathematicians to examine my efforts," said de Branges, who is the Edward C. Elliott Distinguished Professor of Mathematics in Purdue’s School of Science. "While I will eventually submit my proof for formal publication, due to the circumstances I felt it necessary to post the work on the Internet immediately."

The Riemann hypothesis is a highly complex theory about the nature of prime numbers – those numbers divisible only by 1 and themselves – that has stymied mathematicians since 1859. In that year, Bernhard Riemann published a conjecture about how prime numbers were distributed among other numbers. He labored over his own theory until his death in 1866, but was ultimately unable to prove it.

The problem attracted a cult following among mathematicians, but after nearly 150 years no one has ever definitively proven Riemann’s theory to be either true or false. Although a definitive solution would not have any immediate industrial application, in 2001 the Clay Mathematics Institute in Cambridge, Mass., offered a $1 million purse to whomever proves it first.

At least two books for popular audiences have appeared recently that describe the efforts of mathematicians to solve the puzzle. One of the books, Karl Sabbagh’s "Dr. Riemann’s Zeros," provides an extensive profile of de Branges and offers one of the mathematician’s earlier, incomplete attempts at a proof as an appendix.

De Branges is perhaps best known for solving another trenchant problem in mathematics, the Bieberbach conjecture, about 20 years ago. Since then, he has occupied himself to a large extent with the Riemann hypothesis and has attempted its proof several times. His latest efforts have neither been peer reviewed nor accepted for publication, but Leonard Lipshitz, head of Purdue’s mathematics department, said that de Branges’ claim should be taken seriously.

"De Branges’ work deserves attention from the mathematics community," he said. "It will obviously take time to verify his work, but I hope that anyone with the necessary background will read his paper so that a useful discussion of its merits can follow."

Chad Boutin | Purdue News

Further information:

http://news.uns.purdue.edu/UNS/html4ever/2004/040608.DeBranges.Riemann.html

New Insight into Molecular Processes

21.11.2018 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau

Exoplanet stepping stones

21.11.2018 | W. M. Keck Observatory

Innsbruck quantum physicists have constructed a diode for magnetic fields and then tested it in the laboratory. The device, developed by the research groups led by the theorist Oriol Romero-Isart and the experimental physicist Gerhard Kirchmair, could open up a number of new applications.

Electric diodes are essential electronic components that conduct electricity in one direction but prevent conduction in the opposite one. They are found at the...

Max Planck researchers revel the nano-structure of molecular trains and the reason for smooth transport in cellular antennas.

Moving around, sensing the extracellular environment, and signaling to other cells are important for a cell to function properly. Responsible for those tasks...

Researchers at the University of New Hampshire have captured a difficult-to-view singular event involving "magnetic reconnection"--the process by which sparse particles and energy around Earth collide producing a quick but mighty explosion--in the Earth's magnetotail, the magnetic environment that trails behind the planet.

Magnetic reconnection has remained a bit of a mystery to scientists. They know it exists and have documented the effects that the energy explosions can...

Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.

Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...

Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.

In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Optical Coherence Tomography: German-Japanese Research Alliance hosted Medical Imaging Conference

19.11.2018 | Event News

“3rd Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP 2018” Attracts International Experts and Users

09.11.2018 | Event News

On the brain’s ability to find the right direction

06.11.2018 | Event News

Latest News

Helping to Transport Proteins Inside the Cell

21.11.2018 | Life Sciences

Meta-surface corrects for chromatic aberrations across all kinds of lenses

21.11.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Removing toxic mercury from contaminated water

21.11.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks

Science & Research

Science & Research

NASA | A Year in the Life of Earth's CO2

NASA Computer Model Provides a New Portrait of Carbon Dioxide

Black Holes Come to the Big Screen

The new movie "Interstellar" explores a longstanding fascination, but UA astrophysicists are using cutting-edge technology to go one better.

NASA's Swift Mission Observes Mega Flares from a Mini Star

NASA's Swift satellite detected the strongest, hottest, and longest-lasting sequence of stellar flares ever seen from a nearby red dwarf star.

NASA | Global Hawks Soar into Storms

NASA's airborne Hurricane and Severe Storm Sentinel or HS3 mission, will revisit the Atlantic Ocean for the third year in a row.

Baffin Island - Disappearing ice caps

Giff Miller, geologist and paleoclima-tologist, is walking the margins of melting glaciers on Baffin Island, Nunavut, Canada.

The Infrasound Network and how it works

The CTBTO uses infrasound stations to monitor the Earth mainly for atmospheric explosions.