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Journal Article

Shock Waves in Plane Symmetric Spacetimes


Rendall,  Alan D.
Geometric Analysis and Gravitation, AEI-Golm, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Rendall, A. D., & Stahl, F. (2008). Shock Waves in Plane Symmetric Spacetimes. Communications in Partial Differential Equations, 33(11), 2020-2039. doi:10.1080/03605300802421948.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-1382-E
We consider Einstein's equations coupled to the Euler equations in plane symmetry, with compact spatial slices and constant mean curvature time. We show that for a wide variety of equations of state and a large class of initial data, classical solutions break down in finite time. The key mathematical result is a new theorem on the breakdown of solutions of systems of balance laws. We also show that an extension of the solution is possible if the spatial derivatives of the energy density and the velocity are bounded, indicating that the breakdown is really due to the formation of shock waves.