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The validity of modulation equations for extended systems with cubic nonlinearities

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  14 November 2011

Pius Kirrmann
Affiliation:
Mathematisches Institut A, Universität Stuttgart, Pfaffenwaldring 57, W-7000 Stuttgart, Germany
Guido Schneider
Affiliation:
Mathematisches Institut A, Universität Stuttgart, Pfaffenwaldring 57, W-7000 Stuttgart, Germany
Alexander Mielke
Affiliation:
Mathematisches Institut A, Universität Stuttgart, Pfaffenwaldring 57, W-7000 Stuttgart, Germany

Synopsis

Modulation equations play an essential role in the understanding of complicated systems near the threshold of instability. Here we show that the modulation equation dominates the dynamics of the full problem locally, at least over a long time-scale. For systems with no quadratic interaction term, we develop a method which is much simpler than previous ones. It involves a careful bookkeeping of errors and an estimate of Gronwall type.

As an example for the dissipative case, we find that the Ginzburg–Landau equation is the modulation equation for the Swift–Hohenberg problem. Moreover, the method also enables us to handle hyperbolic problems: the nonlinear Schrodinger equation is shown to describe the modulation of wave packets in the Sine–Gordon equation.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Royal Society of Edinburgh 1992

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