Philip Pearce
Office: 2231BDepartment of Mathematics
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 021394307
Email: ppearce@mit.edu
Teaching
 Spring 2018  18.031: Systems Functions and the Laplace Transform
 Fall 2017  18.031: Systems Functions and the Laplace Transform
 Spring 2017  18.354: Nonlinear dynamics II: Continuum Systems
CV
 Instructor in Applied Mathematics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2016–present
 EPSRC Doctoral Prize Fellowship, University of Manchester, 2015–2016
 PhD Applied Mathematics, University of Manchester, 2011–2015
 MMath Mathematics, University of Manchester, 2007–2011
Research Interests
 Fluid Mechanics
 Biophysics
 Combustion
Awards
 IMA Catherine Richards Prize (London, 2017)
 SET for Britain Gold Award for the Mathematical Sciences and de Montfort Medal (London, 2016)
 IOP Combustion Physics Group Prize (Loughborough, 2015)
 Osborne Reynolds Research Student Award (Manchester, 2015)
 EPSRC Doctoral Prize Fellowship (University of Manchester, 2015)
 EPSRC Doctoral Training Award (University of Manchester, 2011)
Current/Previous Projects and Publications
Physical determinants of bacterial biofilm architectures (MIT Applied Mathematics Instructorship):
In many situations bacteria aggregate to form biofilms: dense, surfaceassociated, threedimensional structures populated by cells embedded in matrix. Biofilm architectures are sculpted by mechanical processes including cell growth, cellcell interactions and external forces. Using singlecell live imaging in combination with simulations we characterize the cellcell interactions that generate Vibrio cholerae biofilm morphologies. Fluid shear is shown to affect biofilm shape through the growth rate and orientation of cells, despite spatial differences in shear stress being balanced by cellcell adhesion. Our results demonstrate the importance of cell dynamics mediated by adhesion proteins and matrix generation in determining the global architecture of biofilm structures. In collaboration with the groups of Jörn Dunkel and Knut Drescher.
 Hartmann, R., Singh, P.K., Pearce, P., Mok, R., Song, B., DiazPascual, F., Dunkel, J. and Drescher, K. (2018, submitted)
Flow and solute transport in the placenta (EPSRC Doctoral Prize Fellowship):
Transport of nutrients and waste between mother and fetus takes place in the placenta. Maternal and fetal blood do not mix; maternal blood flows past the fetal villous trees, which consist of villous branches containing arteries, veins and capillaries of the fetus. In this project, a mathematical model is built to investigate how the structure of the fetal villous trees and the vessels inside them affects the transport of substances such as oxygen from the maternal blood to the fetal blood in the placenta. In collaboration with Oliver Jensen, Igor Chernyavsky, Paul Brownbill and others.
 Imagebased modeling of blood flow and oxygen transfer in fetoplacental capillaries
Pearce, P., Brownbill, P., Janacek, J., Jirkovska, M., Kubinova, L., Chernyavsky, I.L. and Jensen, O.E. PLoS ONE 11.10 (2016): e0165369 (DOI, PDF)
Propagation and stability of flames in inhomogeneous mixtures (EPSRC Doctoral Training Award):
In many practical situations involving a propagating flame, inhomogeneities are present in the mixture through which the flame propagates. These inhomogeneities can be caused by fluctuations or stratifications in the temperature, the composition or the flow field. In this project the effect of inhomogeneities on laminar flames is modelled, including premixed flames and triple flames, through the numerical and asymptotic solution of the coupled equations for temperature, mass fractions and flow. In collaboration with Joel Daou.
 Taylor dispersion in premixed combustion: Questions from turbulent combustion answered for laminar flames
Daou, J., Pearce, P. and AlMalki, F. Physical Review Fluids 3 (2018): 023201 (DOI)  Initiation and evolution of triple flames subject to thermal expansion and gravity
Pearce, P. and and Daou, J. Proceedings of the Combustion Institute 36.1 (2017): 14311437 (DOI)  Flame balls in nonuniform mixtures: existence and finite activation energy effects
Daou, R., Pearce, P. and Daou, J. Combustion Theory and Modelling 20.1 (2016): 133 (DOI)  Taylor dispersion and thermal expansion effects on flame propagation in a narrow channel
Pearce, P. and Daou, J. Journal of Fluid Mechanics 754 (2014): 161183 (DOI)  RayleighBénard instability generated by a diffusion flame
Pearce, P. and Daou, J. Journal of Fluid Mechanics 736 (2013): 464494 (DOI)  The effect of gravity and thermal expansion on the propagation of a triple flame in a horizontal channel
Pearce, P. and Daou, J. Combustion and Flame 160.12 (2013): 28002809 (DOI)
Other Articles
 Maths in Medicine: How to survive a science fair
Pearce, P. and Shearer, T. Mathematics Today 52 (3), 135139 (author's version; published version can be found here). Winner of the IMA Catherine Richards prize for best article in Mathematics Today in 2016
 Modelling stalksheath interactions in grasses
Band, L., Cook, D., Dalwadi, M., Fozard, J., Jensen O.E., King, J., Nouri, F., Pearce, P., Pearce, S., Spalding, C. and Williams, H. Mathematics in the Plant Sciences Study Group Report (2016)  Propagation and stability of flames in inhomogeneous mixtures
Pearce, P. PhD Thesis, University of Manchester, (2015)  Understanding patterns of haemorrhage in the eye
Bonshek, R., Cowley, S., Jensen, O.E., Pearce, P., Ravi, A., Stewart, P., Whittaker, R., and Zouache, M. NC3Rs Mathematics in Medicine Study Group Report (2014)
Links

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