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Klaus Roth

(1925 – 2015)

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Chalkdust is very sad to hear that the 1958 Fields medallist Klaus Friedrich Roth, who was featured in our first issue, passed away on the night of the 9th/10th November in Inverness, Scotland. Born in what was then Prussia in 1925, he spent most of his life in the United Kingdom, graduating with a BA from Peterhouse College, Cambridge, in 1945 and obtaining an MSc (1948) and PhD (1950) from University College London. In 1958, whilst at UCL (1946–66), he was awarded the Fields medal for solving “in 1955 the famous Thue-Siegel problem concerning the approximation to algebraic numbers by rational numbers and [proving] in 1952 that a sequence with no three numbers in arithmetic progression has zero density (a conjecture of Erdös and Turán of 1935)”. In 1966, he was awarded a chair at Imperial College London, where he remained for the rest of his career, retiring in 1988 (although he remained there as a visiting professor until 1996).

You can read more about Klaus Roth and his work on the Thue-Siegel problem here.

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