Finite-time singularity formation for incompressible Euler moving interfaces in the plane

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This paper provides a new general method for establishing a finite-time singularity formation for moving interface problems involving the incompressible Euler equations in the plane. This methodology is applied to two different problems. The first problem considered is the two-phase vortex sheet problem with surface tension, for which, under suitable assumptions of smallness of the initial height of the heaviest phase and velocity fields, is proved the finite-time singularity of the natural norm of the problem. This is in striking contrast with the case of finite-time splash and splat singularity formation for the one-phase Euler equations of [4] and [8], for which the natural norm (in the one-phase fluid) stays finite all the way until contact. The second problem considered involves the presence of a heavier rigid body moving in the inviscid fluid. For a very general set of geometries (essentially the contact zone being a graph) we first establish that the rigid body will hit the bottom of the fluid domain in finite time. Compared to the previous paper [20] for the rigid body case, the present paper allows for small square integrable vorticity and provides a characterization of acceleration at contact. A surface energy is shown to blow up and acceleration at contact is shown to oppose the motion: it is either strictly positive and finite if the contact zone is of non zero length, or infinite otherwise.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)337–387
Number of pages51
JournalArchive for Rational Mechanics and Analysis
Issue number1
Early online date13 Oct 2018
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019


  • Finite-time singularity formation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mathematics(all)


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