# Frederick J. Almgren, Jr.

Frederick Justin Almgren | |
---|---|

Born | Birmingham, Alabama |
July 3, 1933

Died | February 5, 1997 Princeton, New Jersey |
(aged 63)

Nationality | USA |

Fields | Geometric measure theory |

Institutions | Princeton University |

Alma mater | Brown University |

Doctoral advisor | Herbert Federer |

Notable students | |

Known for | Plateau's problem, theory of varifolds, Almgren–Pitts min-max theory |

Influenced | Geometric measure theory |

Notable awards | Guggenheim Fellowship (1974) |

Spouse | Jean Taylor |

**Frederick Justin Almgren, Jr.** (July 3, 1933, in Birmingham, Alabama – February 5, 1997, in Princeton, New Jersey) was a mathematician working in geometric measure theory.

He received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1974. Between 1963 to 1992 he was a frequent visiting scholar at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton.^{[1]}

He wrote one of the longest papers in mathematics,^{[2]} proving what is now called the Almgren regularity theorem: the singular set of an *m*-dimensional mass-minimizing hypersurface has dimension at most *m*−2: he also developed the concept of Varifold,^{[3]} first defined by L. C. Young in (Young 1951),^{[4]} and proposed them as generalized solutions to Plateau's problem, in order to deal with the problem even when a concept of orientation is missing. He played also an important role in the founding of *The Geometry Center*.

He was a student of Herbert Federer, one of the founders of geometric measure theory, and was the advisor and husband (as his second wife) of Jean Taylor. His daughter, Ann S. Almgren, is an applied mathematician who works on computational simulations in astrophysics.

## Contents

## Selected publications

- Almgren, Frederick J. Jr. (1964),
*The theory of varifolds: A variational calculus in the large for the*k*-dimensional area integrand*, Princeton: Institute for Advanced Study<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>. A set of mimeographed notes where Frederick J. Almgren, Jr. introduces the term "*varifold*" for the first time. - Almgren, Frederick J. Jr. (1966),
*Plateau's Problem: An Invitation to Varifold Geometry*, Mathematics Monographs Series (1st ed.), New York–Amsterdam: W. A. Benjamin, Inc., pp. XII+74, MR 0190856, Zbl 0165.13201<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>. The first widely circulated book describing the concept of a varifold and its applications to the Plateau's problem. - Almgren, Frederick J. Jr. (1999), Taylor, Jean E. (ed.),
*Selected works of Frederick J. Almgren, Jr.*, Collected Works,**13**, Providence, R.I.: American Mathematical Society, ISBN 978-0-8218-1067-5, MR 1747253, Zbl 0966.01031<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>. - Almgren, Frederick J. Jr. (2000), Taylor, Jean E.; Scheffer, Vladimir (eds.),
*Almgren's big regularity paper. Q-valued functions minimizing Dirichlet's integral and the regularity of area-minimizing rectifiable currents up to codimension 2*, World Scientific Monograph Series in Mathematics,**1**, River Edge, NJ: World Scientific Publishing Co. Inc., ISBN 978-981-02-4108-7, MR 1777737, Zbl 0985.49001<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>. **Almgren, Frederick J. Jr.**(2001) [1966],*Plateau's Problem: An Invitation to Varifold Geometry*, Student Mathematical Library,**13**(2nd ed.), Providence, RI: American Mathematical Society, pp. xvi+78, ISBN 978-0-8218-2747-5, MR 1853442, Zbl 0995.49001<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>. The second edition of the book (Almgren 1966).

## Notes

- ↑ According to Almgren's Community of Scholars web site Profile and to (Mitchell 1980, p. 48): the latter reference lists his appointments at the Institute only up to 1978.
- ↑ Published in book form as (Almgren 2000).
- ↑ See his mimeographed notes (Almgren 1964) and his book (Almgren 1966): the former one is the first exposition of his ideas, but the book (in both its first and second editions (Almgren 2001)) had and still has a wider circulation.
- ↑ Young calls these gemetric objects
*generalized surfaces*: in his commemorative papers describing the research of Almgren, Brian White (1997, p.1452, footnote 1, 1998, p.682, footnote 1) writes that these are "*essentially the same class of surfaces*".

## References

### Biographical references

- Mitchell, Janet A., ed. (1980),
*A Community of Scholars. Faculty and Members 1930-1980*(PDF), Princeton, New Jersey: The Institute for Advanced Study, pp. xxii+565<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>. - The New York Times, Obituary (February 8, 1997), "Frederick J. Almgren Jr., 63, Math Professor",
*The New York Times*, retrieved June 20, 2011<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>. - The Institute for Advanced Study (2012), "Almgren, Frederick J., Jr.",
*A Community of Scholars*, retrieved 4 July 2015<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>.

### General references

- Lieb, Elliott H.; Taylor, Jean; Morgan, Frank; Sullivan, John; Almgren, Robert; Kusner, Robert; Marden, Albert (1997), Epstein, David (ed.), "In Memoriam Frederick J. Almgren Jr., 1933—1997",
*Experimental Mathematics*,**6**(1): 1–12, MR 1464578, Zbl 0883.01029<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>. - Mackenzie, Dana (1997), "Fred Almgren (1933–1997): lover of mathematics, family, and life's adventures",
*Notices of the American Mathematical Society*,**44**(9): 1102–1106, ISSN 0002-9920, MR 1470170, Zbl 0908.01016<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>. - White, Brian (1997), "The Mathematics of F. J. Almgren Jr.",
*Notices of the American Mathematical Society*,**44**(11): 1451–1456, ISSN 0002-9920, MR 1488574, Zbl 0908.01017<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>. - White, Brian (1998), "The mathematics of F. J. Almgren, Jr.",
*The Journal of Geometric Analysis*,**8**(5): 681–702, doi:10.1007/BF02922665, ISSN 1050-6926, MR 1731057, Zbl 0955.01020<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>.

### Scientific references

- Young, L. C. (1951), "Surfaces paramétriques généralisées",
*Bulletin de la Société Mathématique de France*,**79**: 59–84, MR 0046421, Zbl 0044.10203<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>. - De Giorgi, Ennio (1968), "Hypersurfaces of minimal measure in pluridimensional euclidean spaces" (PDF), in Petrovsky, I. G. (ed.),
*Trudy Mezhdunarodnogo kongressa matematikov. Proceedings of International Congress of Mathematicians (Moscow−1966)*, ICM Proceedings, Moscow: Mir Publishers, pp. 395−401, MR 0234329, Zbl 0188.17503<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>.

## External links

- O'Connor, John J.; Robertson, Edmund F., "Frederick J. Almgren, Jr.",
*MacTutor History of Mathematics archive*, University of St Andrews<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>. - Frederick J. Almgren, Jr. at the Mathematics Genealogy Project