This book provides a self-contained introduction to the mathematical theory of hyperbolic systems of conservation laws, with particular emphasis on the study of discontinuous solutions, characterized by the appearance of shock waves. This area has experienced substantial progress in very recent years thanks to the introduction of new techniques, in particular the front tracking algorithm and the semigroup approach. These techniques provide a solution to the long standing open problems of uniqueness and stability of entropy weak solutions. This monograph is the first to present a comprehensive account of these new, fundamental advances, mainly obtained by the author together with several collaborators. It also includes a detailed analysis of the stability and convergence of the front tracking algorithm. The book is addressed to graduate students as well as researchers. Both the elementary and the more advanced material are carefully explained, helping the reader's visual intuition with over 70 figures. A set of problems, with varying difficulty, is given at the end of each chapter.
These exercises are designed to verify and expand a student's understanding of the concepts and techniques previously discussed. For researchers, this book will provide an indispensable reference for the state of the art, in the field of hyperbolic systems of conservation laws. The last chapter contains a large, up to date list of references, preceded by extensive bibliographical notes.