*Published Paper*

**Inserted:** 20 apr 2022

**Last Updated:** 12 jun 2024

**Journal:** Mathematische Annalen

**Volume:** 389

**Number:** 3

**Pages:** 2729-2782

**Year:** 2024

**Doi:** 10.1007/s00208-023-02714-7

**Links:**
arXiv,
PDF

**Abstract:**

We investigate stability properties of the motion by curvature of planar networks. We prove Lojasiewicz-Simon gradient inequalities for the length functional of planar networks with triple junctions. In particular, such an inequality holds for networks with junctions forming angles equal to $\tfrac23\pi$ that are close in $H^2$-norm to minimal networks, i.e., networks whose edges also have vanishing curvature. The latter inequality bounds a concave power of the difference between length of a minimal network $\Gamma_*$ and length of a triple junctions network $\Gamma$ from above by the $L^2$-norm of the curvature of the edges of $\Gamma$. We apply this result to prove the stability of minimal networks in the sense that a motion by curvature starting from a network sufficiently close in $H^2$-norm to a minimal one exists for all times and smoothly converges. We further rigorously construct an example of a motion by curvature having uniformly bounded curvature that smoothly converges to a degenerate network in infinite time.