We classify and derive a canonical form for a linearization of the upper convected Maxwell model for steady viscoelastic fluid flow. We show that there are always two families of characteristic curves which follow the streamlines and across which the solution may be discontinuous. If the product of the Weissenberg number and the Reynolds number is greater than one, then two additional families of characteristic curves exist.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
* Supported by the NSF, Grant MCS-830-1575