|Born||April 29, 1930|
Lanxi, Zhejiang, China
|Alma mater||Zhejiang University|
|Known for||Number theory, History of mathematics, Numerical analysis, Design of experiments|
|Institutions||Chinese Academy of Sciences|
|Doctoral advisor||Hua Luogeng|
|Notable students||Shou-Wu Zhang|
Wang Yuan (Chinese: 王元; pinyin: Wáng Yuán; born April 29, 1930), or Yuan Wang, is a Chinese mathematician and writer famous for his contributions to the Goldbach conjecture. He is a former president of the Chinese Mathematical Society and head of the Institute of Mathematics, Chinese Academy of Sciences.
Wang was born in Lanxi, Zhejiang, China. His father was a magistrate in the local government. Because of the Japanese invasion (the Second Sino-Japanese War), Wang's family had to move away from Zhejiang Province, and finally arrived at the southeast city Kunming in Yunnan in 1938. 1942, Wang's father rose to the position of Chief Secretary of the Academia Sinica. 1946 after the Japanese surrender, his family moved to the capital city, Nanjing.
Wang entered Yingshi University (later merged into National Chekiang University, now Zhejiang University) in Hangzhou, and graduated from the Department of Mathematics in 1952. He then earned a position in the Institute of Mathematics, Academia Sinica. Hua Luogeng was his academic adviser and one of his closest collaborators. 1946–1949, he was the Acting Director of the institute. In 1949, Wang separated with his father, who went to Taiwan.
1966, Wang's career was interrupted by the Cultural Revolution. He was unable to work for more than five years, until 1972. During this time, Wang was harassed and put through interrogation.
1978, Wang was back to his professorship, in the Institute of Mathematics at the Chinese Academy of Sciences. 1980, he was elected to be a member of Chinese Academy of Science. 1988–1992, he was the president of the Chinese Mathematical Society. Wang also worked in the United States for a period of time. He has visited the Institute of Advanced Studies and taught at University of Colorado.
Wang's research focuses on the area of number theory, especially in the Goldbach conjecture, through sieve theory and the Hardy-Littlewood circle method. He obtained a series of important results in the field of number theory.
With Hua Luogeng (华罗庚, alternatively Hua Loo-Keng), he developed high-dimensional combinatorial designs for numerical integration on the unit cube. Their work came to the attention of the statistician Kai-Tai Fang, who realized that their results could be used in the design of experiments. In particular, their results could be used to investigate interaction, for example, in factorial experiments and response surface methodology. Collaborating with Fang led to uniform designs, which have been used also in computer simulations.