Learning

Sunday 13 July 2014

Teen is en route to LA after taking maths step closer to 'Cycle' solution

Published 11/12/2013|23:32

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Paul Clarke is a 17-year-old Dublin student who has helped to crack a problem that has been baffling mathematicians since the 1930s.

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Paul's discovery has taken maths a step closer to solving what is known as the Travelling Salesman Problem, which is concerned with finding the shortest possible distance between a given list of cities, while visiting each one only once and returning to the first city.

It is also known as the Hamiltonian Cycle Problem and has applications in business models including computer routing and networking.

Paul is a fifth-year student at St Paul's College, Raheny, and his breakthrough recently won the Scifest@SFI Discover 2013 award.

He will go on to represent Ireland at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, the world's largest pre-college science competition, in Los Angeles next May. There 1,500 post-primary students from over 70 countries, regions, and territories will showcase their research and compete for over €2m in prize money.

Over 5,300 students from more than 230 schools throughout the country participated in SciFest 2013, making it the most inclusive all-island science competition.

SciFest 2014 is open for registration now.

Irish Independent

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