Prof. Goh Bean San

Prof. B. S. Goh

BSc, PhD

Professor | Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering

Contact Details: Telephone: +60 85 443939 Extn: 2484 Fax: +60 85 443837 Location: SK3-331. Email:

B. S. Goh was a PhD student of D F Lawden, a pioneer in optimal rocket trajectories. He received his PhD degree in 1967 from the University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand. His PhD thesis was entitled, “Necessary Conditions for Singular Extremals in the Calculus of Variations”. Singular control appears in many applied problems in aircraft and rocket trajectories, management problems in economics, medicine, biological populations and engineering.

After graduation, he worked as a lecturer at the University of Malaya for two years before moving to USA. In 1969 he became the first person to apply optimal control theory, which was developed for optimal rocket trajectories, to formulate feedback optimal policies in the management of a single species fish population. Most of his research life has been focused on developing and applying optimal control theory and stability theory in the management of biological populations. Part of this research is written up in the book, Management and Analysis of Biological Populations which was published by Elsevier Press, New York, 1980.

He was a member of a Working Group of the Scientific Committee of the International Whaling Commission which met for a month at the University of Cambridge.

Before coming to work at Curtin Sarawak he was co-author of a paper on the long term optimal management of wild pigs in Sarawak.

In recent years, he has developed a new logical framework for constructing numerical methods in optimization and nonlinear least squares problems. He is supported by two research students in this research.

Currently he is also working with another researcher on singular variational problems. The ultimate aim of this research is to develop the mathematics which is needed to quantize Einstein’s Gravitational Field.

Recent Guest Editorial Positions

  1. Guest editor of a journal special issue: Journal: Nonlinear Dynamics and Systems Theory.  2010
  2. Guest editor of a journal special issue: Journal: Dynamics of Continuous, Discrete & Impulsive Systems (DCDIS-B).  2011.   
  3. Guest editor: Special Issues of Numerical Algebra, Control and Optimization.  2011-2012.

Past Editorial Positions

1980 – 1984    Member of the editorial board of the journal, Optimal Control Applications and Methods.  John Wiley & Sons.

1980 – 1983    Member of editorial board of  Ecological  Modelling, Elsevier .

1985 – 1988    Member of the editorial board of the journal Natural Resource Modelling.  Rocky Mountain Mathematics Consortium.

Selected Publications

  1. B. S. Goh, The second variation for the singular Bolza Problem. SIAM, J. Control, 4(1966) 309-325.
  2. B. S. Goh, Necessary conditions for singular extremals involving multiple control variables. SIAM, J. Control, 4(1966) 716-731.
  3. B. S. Goh, Optimal singular control for multi-input linear systems, Math. Anal. and Applics., 20(1967) 534-539.
  4. B. S. Goh, The anti-missile problem, Malayan Scientist, 4(1967) 77-80.
  5. B. S. Goh, Optimal control of a fish resource, Malayan Scientist, 5(1969-70) 65-70.
  6. B. S. Goh, Leitmann and T.L. Vincent, Optimal control of a prey-predator system, Math. Biosciences, 19(1974) 263-286.
  7. B. S. Goh, W.Y. Peng, T.L. Vincent and J.J. Riley, Optimal management of greenhouse crops,  Hortscience, 10(1975) 7-11.
  8. B. S. Goh, Nonvulnerability of ecosystems in unpredictable environments, Theor. Popul. Biol., 10(1976) 83-95.
  9. B. S. Goh, Global stability in many species systems, Amer.  Naturalist, 111(1977) 135-143.
  10. B. S. Goh, Optimum size limit for a fishery with limited finishing season, Ecological Modelling, 3(1977) 3-15.
  11. B. S. Goh, Book. Management and Analysis of Biological Populations, Elsevier Scientific Publishing Co., New York, 1980.
  12. Lee, C. S. , Diong, C. H. , Goh, B. S. , Stuebing, R. B. and Junau, D. J. Towards achieving maximum sustainable yield management of the bearded pig (Sus barbatus) in a logged-over planted forest’, Journal of Biological Dynamics, 5 (2011) 268 – 276.

Selected Recent Publications 

  1. B. S. Goh, Algorithms for Unconstrained Optimization Problems Via Control Theory, Journal of Optimization Theory and Applications, Vol.92, pp.581-604, (1997).
  2. B. S. Goh, Optimal Singular Rocket and Aircraft Trajectories, Proc. 2008 Chinese Control and Decision Conference, (2008) 1445-1450. 
  3. B. S. Goh, Greatest Descent Algorithms in Unconstrained Optimization, Journal of Optimization Theory and Applications, Vol.142, pp.275-289, (2009).
  4. B. S. Goh, Convergence of numerical methods in unconstrained optimization and the solution of nonlinear equations, Journal of Optimization Theory and Applications. Vol.144  pp.43-55, (2010).
  5. B. S. Goh, Greatest descent methods in optimization with equality constraints, Journal of Optimization Theory and Applications, Vol.148, pp.505-527, (2011).
  6. B. S. Goh, W. J. Leong and K. L. Teo, Robustness of Convergence Proofs in Numerical Methods in Unconstrained Optimization, In H. Xu and X. Wang (eds.), Optimization and Control Methods in Industrial Engineering 1 and Construction, Intelligent Systems, Control and Automation: Science and Engineering 72, Springer Science, Business Media Dordrecht 2014, pp 1-9.
  7. B. S. Goh and D B McDonald, Newton methods to solve a System of Nonlinear Algebraic Equations. Journal of Optimization Theory and Applications, Vol.164, pp.261-276, (2015).
  8. S. Aronna, J. F. Bonnans, B. S. Goh, Second order analysis of control-affine problems with scalar state constraint, Mathematical Programming, Ser. A, 160 (2016) 115-147.

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