TY - JOUR

T1 - Free time minimizers for the three-body problem

AU - Moeckel, Richard

AU - Montgomery, Richard

AU - Sánchez Morgado, Héctor

N1 - Publisher Copyright:
© 2018, Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature.

PY - 2018/3/1

Y1 - 2018/3/1

N2 - Free time minimizers of the action (called “semi-static” solutions by Mañe in International congress on dynamical systems in Montevideo (a tribute to Ricardo Mañé), vol 362, pp 120–131, 1996) play a central role in the theory of weak KAM solutions to the Hamilton–Jacobi equation (Fathi in Weak KAM Theorem in Lagrangian Dynamics Preliminary Version Number 10, 2017). We prove that any solution to Newton’s three-body problem which is asymptotic to Lagrange’s parabolic homothetic solution is eventually a free time minimizer. Conversely, we prove that every free time minimizer tends to Lagrange’s solution, provided the mass ratios lie in a certain large open set of mass ratios. We were inspired by the work of Da Luz and Maderna (Math Proc Camb Philos Soc 156:209–227, 1980) which showed that every free time minimizer for the N-body problem is parabolic and therefore must be asymptotic to the set of central configurations. We exclude being asymptotic to Euler’s central configurations by a second variation argument. Central configurations correspond to rest points for the McGehee blown-up dynamics. The large open set of mass ratios are those for which the linearized dynamics at each Euler rest point has a complex eigenvalue.

AB - Free time minimizers of the action (called “semi-static” solutions by Mañe in International congress on dynamical systems in Montevideo (a tribute to Ricardo Mañé), vol 362, pp 120–131, 1996) play a central role in the theory of weak KAM solutions to the Hamilton–Jacobi equation (Fathi in Weak KAM Theorem in Lagrangian Dynamics Preliminary Version Number 10, 2017). We prove that any solution to Newton’s three-body problem which is asymptotic to Lagrange’s parabolic homothetic solution is eventually a free time minimizer. Conversely, we prove that every free time minimizer tends to Lagrange’s solution, provided the mass ratios lie in a certain large open set of mass ratios. We were inspired by the work of Da Luz and Maderna (Math Proc Camb Philos Soc 156:209–227, 1980) which showed that every free time minimizer for the N-body problem is parabolic and therefore must be asymptotic to the set of central configurations. We exclude being asymptotic to Euler’s central configurations by a second variation argument. Central configurations correspond to rest points for the McGehee blown-up dynamics. The large open set of mass ratios are those for which the linearized dynamics at each Euler rest point has a complex eigenvalue.

KW - Celestial Mechanics

KW - Central configuration

KW - Free time minimizer

KW - Three-body problem

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U2 - 10.1007/s10569-018-9823-y

DO - 10.1007/s10569-018-9823-y

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:85044288428

SN - 0923-2958

VL - 130

JO - Celestial Mechanics and Dynamical Astronomy

JF - Celestial Mechanics and Dynamical Astronomy

IS - 3

M1 - 28

ER -