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Inverse problems for boundary triples with applications

Volume 237 / 2017

B. M. Brown, M. Marletta, S. Naboko, I. Wood Studia Mathematica 237 (2017), 241-275 MSC: 47A10, 30H10, 34B09, 47A11, 47B35. DOI: 10.4064/sm8613-11-2016 Published online: 6 February 2017


This paper discusses the inverse problem of how much information on an operator can be determined/detected from ‘measurements on the boundary’. Our focus is on non-selfadjoint operators and their detectable subspaces (these determine the part of the operator ‘visible’ from ‘boundary measurements’).

We show results in an abstract setting, where we consider the relation between the $M$-function (the abstract Dirichlet to Neumann map or the transfer matrix in system theory) and the resolvent bordered by projections onto the detectable subspaces. More specifically, we investigate questions of unique determination, reconstruction, analytic continuation and jumps across the essential spectrum.

The abstract results are illustrated by examples of Schrödinger operators, matrix-differential operators and, mostly, by multiplication operators perturbed by integral operators (the Friedrichs model), where we use a result of Widom to show that the detectable subspace can be characterized in terms of an eigenspace of a Hankel-like operator.


  • B. M. BrownCardiff School of Computer Science and Informatics
    Cardiff University
    Queen’s Buildings
    5 The Parade
    Cardiff CF24 3AA, UK
  • M. MarlettaSchool of Mathematics
    Cardiff University
    Senghennydd Road
    Cardiff CF24 4AG, UK
  • S. NabokoDepartment of Mathematical Physics
    Institute of Physics
    St. Petersburg State University
    1 Ulianovskaia, St. Petergoff
    St. Petersburg, 198504, Russia
  • I. WoodSchool of Mathematics, Statistics and
    Actuarial Science
    University of Kent
    Cornwallis Building
    Canterbury CT2 7NF, UK

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