Saturday, May 15

Instabilities in Fluid Motion

Updated12:30 PM-1:15 PM
Room: Capitol Center/South
Chair: Barbara L. Keyfitz, University of Houston

The issue of stability/instability of fluid flows presents an important example of a physical problem which may be addressed through sophisticated mathematical techniques. The answers have direct physical interpretations: stable flows are robust under inevitable disturbances in the environment while unstable flows may break up rapidly. The question of stability/instability of a fluid flow is a classical one, however there remain many open problems that are mathematically challenging. In this presentation, the speaker will introduce the concept of a "fluid Lyapunov exponent" and describe an effective sufficient condition for detecting instabilities in an inviscid fluid. She will discuss a recent result which proves that under certain conditions, linear instability implies nonlinear instability. This is joint work with Walter Strauss and Misha Vishik.

Susan Friedlander
Department of Mathematics
University of Illinois, Chicago

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