Selective decay for the rotating shallow-water equations with a structure-preserving discretization

by   Rüdiger Brecht, et al.

Numerical models of weather and climate critically depend on long-term stability of integrators for systems of hyperbolic conservation laws. While such stability is often obtained from (physical or numerical) dissipation terms, physical fidelity of such simulations also depends on properly preserving conserved quantities, such as energy, of the system. To address this apparent paradox, we develop a variational integrator for the shallow water equations that conserves energy, but dissipates potential enstrophy. Our approach follows the continuous selective decay framework , which enables dissipating an otherwise conserved quantity while conserving the total energy. We use this in combination with the variational discretization method to obtain a discrete selective decay framework. This is applied to the shallow water equations, both in the plane and on the sphere, to dissipate the potential enstrophy. The resulting scheme significantly improves the quality of the approximate solutions, enabling long-term integrations to be carried out.



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