Tributes paid to John Grenfell-Shaw

Tributes have been paid to Trinity PhD student, John Grenfell-Shaw, who has died. Trinity’s Senior Tutor, Professor Catherine Barnard, said the College’s thoughts were with his family and friends.

John’s PhD supervisor at the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at Cambridge, Professor Andy Woods, said:

‘John was a clever, engaging and very bright student. He was working on a  classical and fundamental problem of instability of one fluid displacing a second fluid in a narrow channel, which  is also very relevant for drilling wells. He was very interested in the mathematical details of his research and the broader implications of the research for the applications.

‘He was a real pleasure to supervise as he was very imaginative and creative and understood the physical implications of his calculations as well as being very skilled in the mathematics and computation required to make progress with the work – in fact he also took to the laboratory to explore some of the processes in a small experimental tank and check some of his theory. He was very tenacious and worked away on the difficult detailed aspects of the mathematics until he had resolved these to his own satisfaction — which meant his work was of  a very high standard —  a rare and important talent for a PhD student and indeed world class researcher.’

‘He was a very pleasant and highly popular member of the BPI; he always had a smile and was of very good humour. I was also aware of his sporting prowess, seeing him on the river, rowing for Trinity, and he was a very keen cyclist – inspiring other members of the BP Institute with his fitness and ability. He also had a very good network of friends and colleagues in Trinity and clearly relished being a graduate student. He will be greatly missed by us all.’

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