Chapter 5 Stability of large-amplitude shock waves of compressible Navier-Stokes equations

Kevin Zumbrun, Helge Kristian Jenssen, Gregory Lyng

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

79 Scopus citations


We summarize recent progress on one-dimensional and multidimensional stability of viscous shock wave solutions of compressible Navier-Stokes equations and related symmetrizable hyperbolic-parabolic systems, with an emphasis on the large-amplitude regime where transition from stability to instability may be expected to occur. The main result is the establishment of rigorous necessary and sufficient conditions for linearized and nonlinear planar viscous stability, agreeing in one dimension and separated in multidimensions by a co-dimension one set, that both extend and sharpen the formal conditions of structural and dynamical stability found in classical physical literature. The sufficient condition in multidimensions is new, and represents the main mathematical contribution of this article. The sufficient condition for stability is always satisfied for sufficiently small-amplitude shocks, while the necessary condition is known to fail under certain circumstances for sufficiently large-amplitude shocks; both are readily evaluable numerically. The precise conditions under and the nature in which transition from stability to instability occurs are outstanding open questions in the theory.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationHandbook of Mathematical Fluid Dynamics
Number of pages223
ISBN (Print)9780444515568
StatePublished - 2005

Publication series

NameHandbook of Mathematical Fluid Dynamics
ISSN (Print)1874-5792

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • General Engineering
  • Computational Mathematics


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