A numerical energy minimisation approach for semilinear diffusion-reaction boundary value problems based on steady state iterations

by   Mario Amrein, et al.

We present a novel energy-based numerical analysis of semilinear diffusion-reaction boundary value problems. Based on a suitable variational setting, the proposed computational scheme can be seen as an energy minimisation approach. More specifically, this procedure aims to generate a sequence of numerical approximations, which results from the iterative solution of related (stabilised) linearised discrete problems, and tends to a local minimum of the underlying energy functional. Simultaneously, the finite-dimensional approximation spaces are adaptively refined; this is implemented in terms of a new mesh refinement strategy in the context of finite element discretisations, which again relies on the energy structure of the problem under consideration, and does not involve any a posteriori error indicators. In combination, the resulting adaptive algorithm consists of an iterative linearisation procedure on a sequence of hierarchically refined discrete spaces, which we prove to converge towards a solution of the continuous problem in an appropriate sense. Numerical experiments demonstrate the robustness and reliability of our approach for a series of examples.


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