Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Konstantin A. Lurie, Committee Member

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Umberto Mosco, Committee Member

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Bogdan M. Vernescu, Advisor

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Doina Cioranescu, Committee Member

Faculty Advisor or Committee Member

Alain Damlamian, Committee Member




Multiscale phenomena implicitly appear in every physical model. The understanding of the general behavior of a given model at different scales and how one can correlate the behavior at two different scales is essential and can offer new important information. This thesis describes a series of new techniques and results in the analysis of multi-scale phenomena arising in PDEs on variable geometries. In the Second Chapter of the thesis, we present a series of new error estimate results for the periodic homogenization with nonsmooth coefficients. For the case of smooth coefficients, with the help of boundary layer correctors, error estimates results have been obtained by several authors (Oleinik, Lions, Vogelius, Allaire, Sarkis). Our results answer an open problem in the case of nonsmooth coefficients. Chapter 3 is focused on the homogenization of linear elliptic problems with variable nonsmooth coefficients and variable domains. Based on the periodic unfolding method proposed by Cioranescu, Damlamian and Griso in 2002, we propose a new technique for homogenization in perforated domains. With this new technique classical results are rediscovered in a new light and a series of new results are obtained. Also, among other advantages, the method helps one prove better corrector results. Chapter 4 is dedicated to the study of the limit behavior of a class of Steklov-type spectral problems on the Neumann sieve. This is equivalent with the limit analysis for the DtN-map spectrum on the sieve and has applications in the stability analysis of the earthquake nucleation phase model studied in Chapter 5. In Chapter 5, a $Gamma$-convergence result for a class of contact problems with a slip-weakening friction law, is described. These problems are associated with the modeling of the nucleation phase in earthquakes. Through the $Gamma$-limit we obtain an homogenous friction law as a good approximation for the local friction law and this helps us better understand the global behavior of the model, making use of the micro-scale information. As to our best knowledge, this is the first result proposing a homogenous friction law for this earthquake nucleation model.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Degree Name



Mathematical Sciences

Project Type


Date Accepted





G-convergence, perforated domains, Multiscale