Symmetry results for finite-temperature, relativistic Thomas-Fermi equations

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In the semi-classical limit the relativistic quantum mechanics of a stationary beam of counter-streaming (negatively charged) electrons and one species of positively charged ions is described by a nonlinear system of finite-temperature Thomas-Fermi equations. In the high temperature/low density limit these Thomas-Fermi equations reduce to the (semi-)conformal system of Bennett equations discussed earlier by Lebowitz and the author. With the help of a sharp isoperimetric inequality it is shown that any hypothetical particle density function which is not radially symmetric about and decreasing away from the beam's axis would violate the virial theorem. Hence, all beams have the symmetry of the circular cylinder.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)607-626
Number of pages20
JournalCommunications In Mathematical Physics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 1 2002


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Mathematical Physics

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