A Stable Mimetic Finite-Difference Method for Convection-Dominated Diffusion Equations

by   James H. Adler, et al.

Convection-diffusion equations arise in a variety of applications such as particle transport, electromagnetics, and magnetohydrodynamics. Simulation of the convection-dominated regime for these problems, even with high-fidelity techniques, is particularly challenging due to the presence of sharp boundary layers and shocks causing jumps and discontinuities in the solution, and numerical issues such as loss of the maximum principle in the discretization. These complications cause instabilities, admitting large oscillations in the numerical solution when using traditional methods. Drawing connections to the simplex-averaged finite-element method (S. Wu and J. Xu, 2020), this paper develops a mimetic finite-difference (MFD) discretization using exponentially-averaged coefficients to guarantee monotonicity of the scheme and stability of the solution as the diffusion coefficient approaches zero. The finite-element framework allows for transparent analysis of the MFD, such as proving well-posedness and deriving error estimates. Numerical tests are presented confirming the stability of the method and verifying the error estimates.


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