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Law along the Frontier: Differential Equations and Their Boundary Conditions

Mark Wilson
PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association
Vol. 1990, Volume Two: Symposia and Invited Papers (1990), pp. 565-575
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/193098
Page Count: 11
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Law along the Frontier: Differential Equations and Their Boundary Conditions
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Abstract

Physicists often allow the "laws" of a discipline, formulated as partial differential equations, to be disobeyed along various surfaces, arrayed along the boundary and inside the medium under study. What kinds of considerations permit these lapses in the applicability of the equations? This paper surveys a variety of answers found in the physical literature.

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