Soliton Gas: Theory, Numerics and Experiments

Abstract

The concept of soliton gas was introduced in 1971 by V. Zakharov as an infinite collection of weakly interacting solitons in the framework of Korteweg-de Vries (KdV) equation. In this theoretical construction of a diluted soliton gas, solitons with random parameters are almost non-overlapping. More recently, the concept has been extended to dense gases in which solitons strongly and continuously interact. The notion of soliton gas is inherently associated with integrable wave systems described by nonlinear partial differential equations like the KdV equation or the one-dimensional nonlinear Schr\"odinger equation that can be solved using the inverse scattering transform. Over the last few years, the field of soliton gases has received a rapidly growing interest from both the theoretical and experimental points of view. In particular, it has been realized that the soliton gas dynamics underlies some fundamental nonlinear wave phenomena such as spontaneous modulation instability and the formation of rogue waves. The recently discovered deep connections of soliton gas theory with generalized hydrodynamics have broadened the field and opened new fundamental questions related to the soliton gas statistics and thermodynamics. We review the main recent theoretical and experimental results in the field of soliton gas. The key conceptual tools of the field, such as the inverse scattering transform, the thermodynamic limit of finite-gap potentials and the Generalized Gibbs Ensembles are introduced and various open questions and future challenges are discussed.Comment: 35 pages, 8 figure

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