Section: Research Program

Time asymptotics: Stationary states, solitons, and stability issues

The team investigates existence of solitons and their link with the global dynamical behavior for nonlocal problems such as that of the Gross–Pitaevskii (GP) equation which arises in models of dipolar gases. These models, in general, also introduce nonzero boundary conditions which constitute an additional theoretical and numerical challenge. Numerous results are proved for local problems, and numerical simulations allow to verify and illustrate them, as well as making a link with physics. However, most fundamental questions are still open at the moment for nonlocal problems.

The nonlinear Schrödinger (NLS) equation finds applications in numerous fields of physics. We concentrate, in a continued collaboration with our colleagues from the physics department (PhLAM) of the Université de Lille (UdL), in the framework of the Laboratoire d’Excellence CEMPI, on its applications in nonlinear optics and cold atom physics. Issues of orbital stability and modulational instability are central here.

Another typical example of problems that the team wishes to address concerns the LL equation, which describes the dynamics of the spin in ferromagnetic materials. This equation is a fundamental model in the magnetic recording industry [33] and solitons in magnetic media are of particular interest as a mechanism for data storage or information transfer [34]. It is a quasilinear PDE involving a function that takes values on the unit sphere 𝕊2 of 3. Using the stereographic projection, it can be seen as a quasilinear Schrödinger equation and the questions about the solitons, their dynamics and potential blow-up of solutions evoked above are also relevant in this context. This equation is less understood than the NLS equation: even the Cauchy theory is not completely done [28], [25]. In particular, the geometry of the target sphere imposes nonvanishing boundary conditions; even in dimension one, there are kink-type solitons having different limits at ±.