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Center for Scientific Computation and Mathematical Modeling

Research Activities > Programs > Incompressible Flows 2006> Thomas Hou

Analytical and Computational Challenges of Incompressible Flows at High Reynolds Number

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Dynamic Stability of the 3D Axi-Symmetric Navier-Stokes


Thomas Hou

                            Applied Mathematics, California Institute of Technology

Abstract:   In this talk, we study the dynamic stability of the 3D axisymmetric Navier-Stokes Equations with swirl. To this purpose, we propose a new one-dimensional (1D) model which approximates the Navier-Stokes equations along the symmetry axis. An important property of this 1D model is that one can construct from its solutions a family of exact solutions of the 3D Navier-Stokes equations. The nonlinear structure of the 1Dmodel has some very interesting properties. On one hand, it can lead to tremendous dynamic growth of the solution within a short time. On the other hand, it has a surprising dynamic depletion mechanism that prevents the solution from blowing up in finite time. By exploiting this special nonlinear structure, we prove the global regularity of the 3D Navier-Stokes equations for a family of initial data, whose solutions can lead to large dynamic growth, but yet have global smooth solutions. This is a joint work with Professor Congming Li.