Entropy and chaos in the Kac model
Eric A. Carlen Maria C. Carvalho Jonathan Le Roux Michael Loss Cédric Villani
We investigate the behavior in $N$ of the $N$--particle entropy functional for Kac's stochastic model of Boltzmann dynamics, and its relation to the entropy function for solutions of Kac's one dimensional nonlinear model Boltzmann equation. We prove results that bring together the notion of propagation of chaos, which Kac introduced in the context of this model, with the problem of estimating the rate of equilibration in the model in entropic terms, showing that the entropic rate of convergence can be arbitrarily slow. Results proved here show that one can in fact use entropy production bounds in Kac's stochastic model to obtain entropic convergence bounds for his non linear model Boltzmann equation, though the problem of obtaining optimal lower bounds of this sort for the original Kac model remains open and the upper bounds obtained here show that this problem is somewhat subtle.
keywords: Entropy propagation of chaos.
Localization, smoothness, and convergence to equilibrium for a thin film equation
Eric A. Carlen Süleyman Ulusoy
We investigate the long-time behavior of weak solutions to the thin-film type equation $$v_t =(xv - vv_{xxx})_x\ ,$$ which arises in the Hele-Shaw problem. We estimate the rate of convergence of solutions to the Smyth-Hill equilibrium solution, which has the form $\frac{1}{24}(C^2-x^2)^2_+$, in the norm $$|\!|\!| f |\!|\!|_{m,1}^2 = \int_{\mathbb{R}}(1+ |x|^{2m})|f(x)|^2 \, dx + \int_{\mathbb{R}}|f_x(x)|^2 \, dx.$$ We obtain exponential convergence in the $|\!|\!| \cdot |\!|\!|_{m,1}$ norm for all $m$ with $1\leq m< 2$, thus obtaining rates of convergence in norms measuring both smoothness and localization. The localization is the main novelty, and in fact, we show that there is a close connection between the localization bounds and the smoothness bounds: Convergence of second moments implies convergence in the $H^1$ Sobolev norm. We then use methods of optimal mass transportation to obtain the convergence of the required moments. We also use such methods to construct an appropriate class of weak solutions for which all of the estimates on which our convergence analysis depends may be rigorously derived. Though our main results on convergence can be stated without reference to optimal mass transportation, essential use of this theory is made throughout our analysis.
keywords: Wasserstein distance gradient flow Thin-film equation Euler-Lagrange equation. Lyapunov functional
Entropy production inequalities for the Kac Walk
Eric A. Carlen Maria C. Carvalho Amit Einav

Mark Kac introduced what is now called 'the Kac Walk' with the aim of investigating the spatially homogeneous Boltzmann equation by probabilistic means. Much recent work, discussed below, on Kac's program has run in the other direction: using recent results on the Boltzmann equation, or its one-dimensional analog, the non-linear Kac-Boltzmann equation, to prove results for the Kac Walk. Here we investigate new functional inequalities for the Kac Walk pertaining to entropy production, and introduce a new form of 'chaoticity'. We then show how these entropy production inequalities imply entropy production inequalities for the Kac-Boltzmann equation. This results validate Kac's program for proving results on the non-linear Boltzmann equation via analysis of the Kac Walk, and they constitute a partial solution to the 'Almost' Cercignani Conjecture on the sphere.

keywords: Kac Walk chaoticity entropy method entropy production cercignani conjecture
On multi-dimensional hypocoercive BGK models
Franz Achleitner Anton Arnold Eric A. Carlen

We study hypocoercivity for a class of linearized BGK models for continuous phase spaces. We develop methods for constructing entropy functionals that enable us to prove exponential relaxation to equilibrium with explicit and physically meaningful rates. In fact, we not only estimate the exponential rate, but also the second time scale governing the time one must wait before one begins to see the exponential relaxation in the $L^1$ distance. This waiting time phenomenon, with a long plateau before the exponential decay "kicks in" when starting from initial data that is well-concentrated in phase space, is familiar from work of Aldous and Diaconis on Markov chains, but is new in our continuous phase space setting. Our strategies are based on the entropy and spectral methods, and we introduce a new "index of hypocoercivity" that is relevant to models of our type involving jump processes and not only diffusion. At the heart of our method is a decomposition technique that allows us to adapt Lyapunov's direct method to our continuous phase space setting in order to construct our entropy functionals. These are used to obtain precise information on linearized BGK models. Finally, we also prove local asymptotic stability of a nonlinear BGK model.

keywords: Kinetic equations BGK models hypocoercivity Lyapunov functionals perturbation methods for matrix equations

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