Hyperbolic conservation laws: An illustrated tutorial

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These notes provide an introduction to the theory of hyperbolic systems of conservation laws in one space dimension. The various chapters cover the following topics: (1) Meaning of a conservation equation and definition of weak solutions. (2) Hyperbolic systems. Explicit solutions in the linear, constant coefficients case. Nonlinear effects: loss of regularity and wave interactions. (3) Shock waves: Rankine-Hugoniot equations and admissibility conditions. (4) Genuinely nonlinear and linearly degenerate characteristic fields. Centered rarefaction waves. The general solution of the Riemann problem. Wave interaction estimates. (5) Weak solutions to the Cauchy problem, with initial data having small total variation. Approximations generated by the front-tracking method and by the Glimm scheme. (6) Continuous dependence of solutions w.r.t. the initial data, in the L 1 distance. (7) Characterization of solutions which are limits of front tracking approximations. Uniqueness of entropy-admissible weak solutions. (8) Vanishing viscosity approximations. (9) Extensions and open problems. The survey is concluded with an Appendix, reviewing some basic analytical tools used in the previous sections.Throughout the exposition, technical details are mostly left out. The main goal of these notes is to convey basic ideas, also with the aid of a large number of figures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)157-245
Number of pages89
JournalLecture Notes in Mathematics
StatePublished - 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Algebra and Number Theory


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