On Gravitational Collapse in General Relativity April 3, 2017 - 3:00pm PDE and Analysis Seminar

Speaker Information

Xinliang An
Postdoctoral Fellow
University of Toronto

In the process of gravitational collapse, singularities may form, which are either covered by trapped surfaces (black holes) or visible to faraway observers (naked singularities).    

 In this talk, I will present three results with regard to gravitational collapse for Einstein vacuum equation.

The first is a simplified approach to Christodoulou’s monumental result which showed that trapped surfaces can form dynamically by the focusing of gravitational radiation from past null infinity. We extend the methods of Klainerman-Rodnianski, who gave a simplified proof of this result in a finite region.

 The second result extends the theorem of Christodoulou by allowing for weaker initial data but still guaranteeing that a trapped surface forms in the causal domain. In particular, we show that a trapped surface can form dynamically from initial data which is merely large in a scale-invariant way. The second result is obtained jointly with Jonathan Luk.

The third result extends Christodoulou’s famous example on formation of naked singularity for Einstein-scalar field system under spherical symmetry. With numerical and analytic tools, we generalize Christodoulou’s result and construct an example of naked singularity formation for Einstein vacuum equation in higher dimension. The third result is obtained jointly with Xuefeng Zhang.