Denis Weaire

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Denis Lawrence Weaire (FRS) is an Irish physicist, who is an emeritus professor of Trinity College Dublin.

Educated at the Belfast Royal Academy and Clare College, Cambridge, he has since held positions at the universities of California, Chicago, Harvard and Yale, ultimately holding professorships at Heriot-Watt, and University College Dublin before becoming, in 1984, Erasmus Smith's Professor of Natural Philosophy in Trinity. Together with his graduate student, Robert Phelan, Weaire came up with a counter example to Lord Kelvin's conjecture on which surface was the most economical way to divide space into cells of equal size with the least surface area. This counter-example is now referred to as the Weaire–Phelan structure. This structure was an integral part of the design of the aquatic centre used in the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.[1]

In 1971, together with Michael Thorpe, he introduced the Weaire–Thorpe model for electronic structure calculations. This has found application in the theory of amorphous insulators.

Weaire is currently carrying out research in the field of foam physics. He has co-authored The Physics of Foams, Oxford University Press (2000) with Stefan Hutzler.

In 2005 he was awarded the premier award of the Royal Irish Academy, the Cunningham Medal. Previous winners include William Rowan Hamilton.

Weaire has a strong interest in the history of science and has edited several collections of historical essays on Irish physicists.

Relationship to Ira Einhorn[edit]

During the convicted murderer Ira Einhorn's time in Ireland, Weaire was his landlord.[2] When Weaire found out about the accusations of murder that Einhorn faced in the U.S., he reported him to the FBI and evicted him.[2] Weaire, and his relationship to Einhorn, was the subject of the 2004 TV show, Interpol Investigates (episode entitled Fatal Compulsion). The part of 'Professor Dennis Weaire' was played by actor Robert Randolph Caton. He was previously depicted in the made for TV film The Hunt for the Unicorn Killer, which featured Naomi Watts as Holly Maddux, Kevin Anderson as Einhorn, and Ian D. Clark as Weaire.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Henry Fountain: A Problem of Bubbles Frames an Olympic Design, New York Times, August 5, 2008; retrieved 2008 October 9.
  2. ^ a b TIME Archive: The Ira Einhorn Case, 20 July 2001, retrieved 18 September 2009

External links[edit]