Some interesting features of a class of two-dimensional Hamiltonians with indefinite kinetic energy are considered. It is shown that such Hamiltonians cannot be reduced, in general, to an equivalent dynamical Hamiltonian with positive definite kinetic energy quadratic in velocities. Complex nonlinear evolution equations like the K-dV, the MK-dV and the sine-Gordon equations possess such Hamiltonians. The case of complex K-dV equation has been considered in detail to demonstrate the generic features. The two-dimensional real systems obtained by analytic continuation to complex plane of one-dimensional dynamical systems are also discussed. The evolution equations for nonlinear, amplitude-modulated Langmuir waves as well as circularly polarized electromagnetic waves in plasmas, are considered as illustrative examples.
Volume 94, 2020
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