Perfect fluids

Jan de Boer, Jelle Hartong, Niels A. Obers, Watse Sybesma, Stefan Vandoren

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We present a systematic treatment of perfect fluids with translation and rotation symmetry, which is also applicable in the absence of any type of boost symmetry. It involves introducing a fluid variable, the kinetic mass density, which is needed to define the most general energy-momentum tensor for perfect fluids. Our analysis leads to corrections to the Euler equations for perfect fluids that might be observable in hydrodynamic fluid experiments. We also derive new expressions for the speed of sound in perfect fluids that reduce to the known perfect fluid models when boost symmetry is present. Our framework can also be adapted to (non-relativistic) scale invariant fluids with critical exponent z. We show that perfect fluids cannot have Schrödinger symmetry unless z = 2. For generic values of z there can be fluids with Lifshitz symmetry, and as a concrete example, we work out in detail the thermodynamics and fluid description of an ideal gas of Lifshitz particles and compute the speed of sound for the classical and quantum Lifshitz gases.
Original languageEnglish
Article number003
Number of pages37
JournalSciPost Physics
Publication statusPublished - 17 Jul 2018

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