Christopher Lang was a nominee for a 2019 Jessie W.H. Zou Memorial Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Research. Lang, who is a double-major student in Mathematical Physics and Pure Mathematics at the University of Waterloo, worked on a novel analysis of cutting-edge numerical simulations to investigate a long-standing hypothesis of atmospheric and oceanic fluid turbulence with Associate Professor Michael Waite.

While holding two NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Awards, Lang made significant contributions to a research project which resulted in a paper called Scale-dependent anisotropy in forced stratified turbulence, that has recently been accepted for publication in Physical Review Fluids. Lang used four different isotropy diagnostics to test a long-standing hypothesis that turbulent eddies in the atmosphere and ocean become isotropic at small length scales. His work presented a comprehensive picture of how large-scale pancake vortices transition to more isotropic structures at smaller scales.

“Christopher’s contribution to this project was essential. It would not have been completed without him,” said Waite. “He investigated, implemented, extended, and applied the diagnostics. He interpreted the findings and made the figures. He also wrote the first draft of the manuscript.”