Calculus of Variations and Geometric Measure Theory
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G. Alberti - G. Crippa - A. L. Mazzucato

Exponential self-similar mixing by incompressible flows

created by crippa on 02 May 2016
modified on 16 Sep 2018


Accepted Paper

Inserted: 2 may 2016
Last Updated: 16 sep 2018

Journal: Journal of the American Mathematical Society
Year: 2018


We study the problem of the optimal mixing of a passive scalar under the action of an incompressible flow in two space dimensions. The scalar solves the continuity equation with a divergence-free velocity field, which satisfies a bound in the Sobolev space $W^{s,p}$, where $s \geq 0$ and $1\leq p\leq \infty$. The mixing properties are given in terms of a characteristic length scale, called the mixing scale. We consider two notions of mixing scale, one functional, expressed in terms of the homogeneous Sobolev norm $\dot H^{-1}$, the other geometric, related to rearrangements of sets. We study rates of decay in time of both scales under self-similar mixing. For the case $s=1$ and $1 \leq p \leq \infty$ (including the case of Lipschitz continuous velocities, and the case of physical interest of enstrophy-constrained flows), we present examples of velocity fields and initial configurations for the scalar that saturate the exponential lower bound, established in previous works, on the time decay of both scales. We also present several consequences for the geometry of regular Lagrangian flows associated to Sobolev velocity fields.


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