Wednesday, February 13, 2013

1302.2652 (Rupert L. Frank et al.)

Uniqueness of radial solutions for the fractional Laplacian    [PDF]

Rupert L. Frank, Enno Lenzmann, Luis Silvestre
We prove general uniqueness results for radial solutions of linear and nonlinear equations involving the fractional Laplacian $(-\Delta)^s$ with $s \in (0,1)$ for any space dimensions $N \geq 1$. By extending a monotonicity formula a la Cabre and Sire \cite{CaSi-10}, we show that the linear equation $(-\Delta)^s u+ Vu = 0$ in $\R^N$ has at most one radial and bounded solution vanishing at infinity, provided that the potential $V$ is a radial and non-decreasing. In particular, this result implies that all radial eigenvalues of the corresponding fractional Schr\"odinger operator $H=(-\Delta)^s + V$ are simple. Furthermore, by combining these findings on linear equations with topological bounds for a related problem on the upper half-space $\R^{N+1}_+$, we show uniqueness and nondegeneracy of ground state solutions for the nonlinear equation $(-\Delta)^s Q + Q - |Q|^{\alpha} Q = 0$ in $\R^N$ for arbitrary space dimensions $N \geq 1$ and all admissible exponents $\alpha >0$. This generalizes the nondegeneracy and uniqueness result for dimension N=1 recently obtained by the first two authors in \cite{FrLe-10} and, in particular, the uniqueness result for solitary waves of the Benjamin--Ono equation found by Amick and Toland \cite{AmTo-91}.
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