Computing stability of multidimensional traveling waves

Veerle Ledoux, S. J A Malham, Jitse Niesen, Vera Thümmler

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15 Citations (Scopus)


We present a numerical method for computing the pure-point spectrum associated with the linear stability of multidimensional traveling fronts to parabolic nonlinear systems. Our method is based on the Evans function shooting approach. Transverse to the direction of propagation we project the spectral equations onto a finite Fourier basis. This generates a large, linear, one-dimensional system of equations for the longitudinal Fourier coefficients. We construct the stable and unstable solution subspaces associated with the longitudinal far-field zero boundary conditions, retaining only the information required for matching, by integrating the Riccati equations associated with the underlying Grassmannian manifolds. The Evans function is then the matching condition measuring the linear dependence of the stable and unstable subspaces and thus determines eigenvalues. As a model application, we study the stability of two-dimensional wrinkled front solutions to a cubic autocatalysis model system. We compare our shooting approach with the continuous orthogonalization method of Humpherys and Zumbrun. We then also compare these with standard projection methods that directly project the spectral problem onto a finite multidimensional basis satisfying the boundary conditions. © 2009 Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)480-507
Number of pages28
JournalSIAM Journal on Applied Dynamical Systems
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • Evans function
  • Multidimensional stability
  • Parabolic systems


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