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Slow equilibration of quasi-integrable systems

Tomer Goldfriend
École Normale Supérieure Paris
Thursday, July 4, 2019 - 11:00

Quasi-integrable systems, i.e., whose Hamiltonian slightly differs from an integrable one, appear in various areas such as planetary motion, weak turbulence, and quantum mechanics. We study the slow relaxation of isolated quasi-integrable systems, focusing on the classical problem of Fermi-Pasta-Ulam-Tsingou (FPU) chain. It is well known that the initial energy sharing between different linear modes can be inferred by the integrable Toda chain. Using numerical simulations, we show explicitly how the relaxation of the FPU chain toward equilibration is determined by a slow drift within the space of Toda's integrals of motion. We analyze the whole spectrum of Toda modes and show how they dictate, via a generalized Gibbs ensemble, the quasistatic states along the FPU evolution. This description can be employed to devise a fast numerical integration, and underlies a fluctuation theorem for quasi-integrable systems.

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