Abstract: In this paper we study the limiting behavior of nonhomogeneous hyperbolic systems of balance laws when the relaxed equilibria are described by means of systems of parabolic type. In particular we obtain a complete theory for the $2\times 2$ systems of genuinely nonlinear hyperbolic balance laws in 1-D with a strong dissipative term. A different method, which combines the div-curl lemma with accretive operators, is then applied to study the limiting profiles in the case of nonhomogeneous isentropic gas dynamics. We also investigate relaxation results for some 2-D cases, which include the Cattaneo model for nonlinear heat conduction and the compressible Euler flow. Moreover, convergence result is also obtained for general semilinear systems in 1-D.
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