Boussinesq equations and other systems for small-amplitude long waves in nonlinear dispersive media. Part I: derivation and the linear theory

Considered herein are a number of variants of the classical Boussinesq system and their higher-order generalizations. Such equations were first derived by Boussinesq to describe the two-way propagation of small-amplitude, long wavelength, gravity waves on the surface of water in a canal. These systems arise also when modeling the propagation of long-crested waves propagating on large lakes, the ocean and in other contexts. Depending on the modeling of dispersion, the resulting system may or may not have a linearization about the rest state which is well posed. Even when well posed, the linearized system may exhibit a lack of conservation of energy that is at odds with its status as an approximation to the Euler equations. In the present script, we derive a four-parameter family of Boussinesq systems from the two-dimensional Euler equation for free-surface flow and isolate those members of the class that are linearly well posed and energy conserving.

Min Chen (