Laplacian Eigenfunctions and the Hot Spots conjecture

Analysis Seminar
Wednesday, November 10, 2021 - 3:30pm for 1 hour (actually 50 minutes)
ZOOM (see abstract for link)
Stefan Steinerberger – University of Washington
Benjamin Jaye

The Hot Spots conjecture (due to J. Rauch from the 1970s) is one of the most interesting open problems in elementary PDEs: it basically says that if we run the heat equation in an insulated domain for a long period of time, then the hottest and the coldest spot will be on the boundary. What makes things more difficult is that the statement is actually false but that it's extremely nontrivial to construct counterexamples. The statement is widely expected to be true for convex domains but even triangles in the plane were only proven recently. We discuss the problem, show some recent pictures of counterexample domains and discuss some philosophically related results: (1) the hottest and the coldest spots are at least very far away from each other and (2) whenever the hottest spot is inside the domain, it is not that much hotter than the hottest spot on the boundary. Many of these questions should have analogues on combinatorial graphs and we mention some results in that direction as well.

The seminar will be held on Zoom and can be found at the link