Nelson-type Limits for α-Stable Lévy Processes

Abstract: Brownian motion has met growing interest in mathematics, physics and particularly in finance since it was introduced in the beginning of the twentieth century. Stochastic processes generalizing Brownian motion have influenced many research fields theoretically and practically. Moreover, along with more refined techniques in measure theory and functional analysis more stochastic processes were constructed and studied. Lévy processes, with Brownian motionas a special case, have been of major interest in the recent decades. In addition, Lévy processes include a number of other important processes as special cases like Poisson processes and subordinators. They are also related to stable processes. In this thesis we generalize a result by S. Chandrasekhar [2] and Edward Nelson who gave a detailed proof of this result in his book in 1967 [12]. In Nelson’s first result standard Ornstein-Uhlenbeck processes are studied. Physically this describes free particles performing a random and irregular movement in water caused by collisions with the water molecules. In a further step he introduces a nonlinear drift in the position variable, i.e. he studies the case when these particles are exposed to an external field of force in physical terms. In this report, we aim to generalize the result of Edward Nelson to the case of α-stable Lévy processes. In other words we replace the driving noise of a standard Ornstein-Uhlenbeck process by an α-stable Lévy noise and introduce a scaling parameter uniformly in front of all vector fields in the cotangent space, even in front of the noise. This corresponds to time being sent to infinity. With Chandrasekhar’s and Nelson’s choice of the diffusion constant the stationary state of the velocity process (which is approached as time tends to infinity) is the Boltzmann distribution of statistical mechanics.The scaling limits we obtain in the absence and presence of a nonlinear drift term by using the scaling property of the characteristic functions and time change, can be extended to other types of processes rather than α-stable Lévy processes. In future, we will consider to generalize this one dimensional result to Euclidean space of arbitrary finite dimension. A challenging task is to consider the geodesic flow on the cotangent bundle of a Riemannian manifold with scaled drift and scaled Lévy noise. Geometrically the Ornstein-Uhlenbeck process is defined on the tangent bundle of the real line and the driving Lévy noise is defined on the cotangent space.