The problem with Hilbert's 6th problem March 31, 2017 - 3:30pm Colloquium

Speaker Information

Marshall Slemrod

University of Wisconsin at Madison


Abstract: In his famous 1900 ICM address Hilbert proposed his famous list of problems for the 20th century. Among these was his 6th problem which was less clearly formulated than the others but dealt with a rigorous derivation of the macroscopic equations of continuum mechanics from the available microscopic of his time, i.e. statistical mechanics and specifically Boltzmann's kinetic theory of gases. The problem has drawn attention from analysts over the years and even Hilbert himself made a contribution. In this talk I will note how an exact summation of the Chapman-Enskog expansion for the Boltzmann equation due to Ilya Karlin ( ETH) and Alexander Gorban (Leicester) can be used to represent solutions of the Boltzmann equation and then show that these solutions CANNOT converge the classical balance laws of mass, momentum, and energy associated the Euler equation of compressible gas dynamics. Hence alas  Hilbert's program (at least with respect to gas dynamics) has a negative outcome.



HOST: Bill Troy