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In this investigation we propose a computational approach for the solution of optimal control problems for vortex systems with compactly supported vorticity. The problem is formulated as a PDE-constrained optimization in which the solutions are found using a gradient-based descent method. Recognizing such Euler flows as free-boundary problems, the proposed approach relies on shape differentiation combined with adjoint analysis to determine cost functional gradients. In explicit tracking ofdoi:10.1016/j.cam.2011.11.002 fatcat:yd4e262wv5afvdc5fn6s2vbb2y