Bonita V. Saunders Bonita V. Saunders

Applied and Computational Mathematics Division
Information Technology Laboratory
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
US Department of Commerce

Mathematician, Mathematical Software Group

PhD, Computational and Applied Mathematics, Old Dominion University (Norfolk, VA)
MS, Mathematics, University of Virginia (Charlottesville, VA)
BA, Mathematics, College of William and Mary (Williamsburg, VA)

Areas of Research
Numerical Grid Generation
Visualization of Special Functions
Numerical Software for Special Functions
Numerical Solution of Partial Differential Equations

Mailing Address
National Institute of Standards and Technology
100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8910
Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8910 USA

Contact Information
Email :
Phone : (301) 975-3836

Selected Publications

Selected Talks/Interviews

DLMF Standard Reference Tables (DLMF Tables)
Joint project between NIST and the University of Antwerp to offer online service for creating tables of numerical values for special functions, with guaranteed accuracy to high precision computed over parameters and arguments of the user's choice.

Digital Library of Mathematical Functions (DLMF)
Managed the production of over 500 graphs and visualizations. The DLMF includes formulas, methods of computation, references, and software information for nearly forty high level mathematical functions. It features interactive navigation, a mathematical equation search and dynamic interactive visualizations. The DLMF, also being published as a book, is the successor to Abramowitz and Stegun's NBS Handbook of Mathematical Functions with Formulas, Graphs and Mathematical Tables first published in 1964.

Visualization of Complex Functions
Numerical grid generation techniques used along with the Virtual Reality Modeling Language (VRML) and X3D (Extensible 3D) to create accurate visualizations of complex functions on the web. See "New Feature": Improved graphics using WebGL and X3DOM!

Previous Projects
Portable vectorized software for Bessel function evaluation
With Ronald F. Boisvert, developed a suite of computer programs for the evaluation of Bessel functions and modified Bessel functions of orders zero and one.

Fluids modeling, directional solidification
Worked on adaptive codes to assist in the modeling of the directional solidification of metal alloys. Studied effects of gravity moduluation on thermosolutal convection in fluids. Several preliminary publications, but the development of better adaptive grid techniques during the DLMF project may lead to more work in this area.

US Department of Commerce Gold Medal (2011)
Awarded to members of NIST Project Team for the NIST Digital Library of Mathematical Functions(DLMF) ( and the NIST Handbook of Mathematical Functions.

2011 Government Computer News Award for Outstanding Information Technology Achievement
Presented to NIST DLMF Project Team.

2001 National Association of Mathematicians Claytor Lecturer

SIGMA XI Scientific Research Society


Strenghening Our Leaders (SOL) Program (13 years, chair 8 years)
Tutoring and enrichment program designed to prepare K-12 students for the Virginia Standards of Learning tests required for a high school diploma. This program is sponsored by the Northern Virginia Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta, Inc. in partnership with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Washington.

Siemens Competition in Math, Science & Technology Judge (13 years)

Math SPIRAL: Summer Program in Research and Learning
Gave presentations at NIST to program participants. Math SPIRAL is a multiyear summer program funded by NSF to bring gifted college sophomores and juniors from underrepresented groups to Morgan State University. During the six-week summer session students participate in intensive classroom work built around applications and opportunities in the mathematical sciences. They work with research teams on campus and see a wide range of career opportunities in the mathematical sciences through tours and special lectures.

George Washington University (GWU) Summer Program for Women in Mathematics
Hosted program participants at NIST, where NIST scientists gave presentations on their work, also served on career panels at GWU.

Goals for Girls Mentor Program (2007-2012)
Mentoring program for middle school girls sponsored by Gaithersburg Middle School(Maryland) in conjunction with the local chapter of the American Association of University Women.

NIST SURF, Internship programs -
Research programs for students (see link below). Supervised several college students.

And many other presentations for Science Days, Career Days...

Just for Students
Sloan Career Cornerstone Center
Occasionally I receive interview requests during African American History Month or National Women's History Month or Mathematics Awareness Month or ... This site answers most of the questions I've been asked over the years. Oh, when was I born? Well, my birthday is October 19 and a careful reading of my profile will provide you with the year!

Student Employment Opportunities in Applied and Computational Mathematics

Last modified: September 26, 2016. Send comments and suggestions to Bonita V. Saunders (