Transport of interfaces with surface tension by 2D viscous flows

  • Walter A. Strauss

    Brown University, Providence, USA
  • David M. Ambrose

    Drexel University, Philadelphia, USA
  • Milton C. Lopes Filho

    IMECC - UNICAMP, Campinas, Brazil
  • Helena J. Nussenzveig Lopes

    IMECC - UNICAMP, Campinas, Brazil


We consider the problem of finding a global weak solution for two-dimensional, incompressible viscous flow on a torus, containing a surface-tension bearing curve transported by the flow. This is the simplest case of a class of two-phase flows considered by Plotnikov in [16] and Abels in [1]. Our work complements Abels’ analysis by examining this special case in detail. We construct a family of approximations and show that the limit of these approximations satisfies, globally in time, an incomplete set of equations in the weak sense. In addition, we examine criteria for closure of the limit system, we find conditions which imply nontrivial dependence of the limiting solution on the surface tension parameter, and we obtain a new system of evolution equations which models our flow-interface problem, in a form that may be useful for further analysis and for numerical simulations.

Cite this article

Walter A. Strauss, David M. Ambrose, Milton C. Lopes Filho, Helena J. Nussenzveig Lopes, Transport of interfaces with surface tension by 2D viscous flows. Interfaces Free Bound. 12 (2010), no. 1, pp. 23–44

DOI 10.4171/IFB/225