We construct a family of embedded pairs for optimal explicit strong stability preserving Runge–Kutta methods of order 2≤p≤4 to be used to obtain numerical solution of spatially discretized hyperbolic PDEs. In this construction, the goals include non-defective property, large stability region, and small error values as defined in Dekker and Verwer (1984) and Kennedy et al. (2000). The new family of embedded pairs offer the ability for strong stability preserving (SSP) methods to adapt by varying the step-size. Through several numerical experiments, we assess the overall effectiveness in terms of work versus precision while also taking into consideration accuracy and stability.

The current manuscript is a final report on the activities carried out under the Project LDRD-CIS #226834. In scientific terms, the work reported in this manuscript is a continuation of the efforts started with Project LDRD-express #223796 with final report of activities SAND2021-11481, see [83]. In this section we briefly explain what pre-existing developments motivated the current body of work and provide an overview of the activities developed with the funds provided. The overarching goal of the current project LDRD-CIS #226834 and the previous project LDRD-express #223796 is the development of numerical methods with mathematically guaranteed properties in order to solve the Euler-Maxwell system of plasma physics and generalizations thereof. Even though Project #223796 laid out general foundations of space and time discretization of Euler-Maxwell system, overall, it was focused on the development of numerical schemes for purely electrostatic fluid-plasma models. In particular, the project developed a family of schemes with mathematically guaranteed robustness in order to solve the Euler-Poisson model. This model is an asymptotic limit where only electrostatic response of the plasma is considered. Its primary feature is the presence of a non-local force, the electrostatic force, which introduces effects with infinite speed propagation into the problem. Even though instantaneous propagation of perturbations may be considered nonphysical, there are plenty of physical regimes of technical interest where such an approximation is perfectly valid.

This report summarizes the findings and outcomes of the LDRD-express project with title “Fluid models of charged species transport: numerical methods with mathematically guaranteed properties”. The primary motivation of this project was the computational/mathematical exploration of the ideas advanced aiming to improve the state-of-the-art on numerical methods for the one-fluid Euler-Poisson models and gain some understanding on the Euler-Maxwell model. Euler-Poisson and Euler-Maxwell, by themselves are not the most technically relevant PDE plasma-models. However, both of them are elementary building blocks of PDE-models used in actual technical applications and include most (if not all) of their mathematical difficulties. Outside the classical ideal MHD models, rigorous mathematical and numerical understanding of one-fluid models is still a quite undeveloped research area, and the treatment/understanding of boundary conditions is minimal (borderline non-existent) at this point in time. This report focuses primarily on bulk-behaviour of Euler-Poisson’s model, touching boundary conditions only tangentially.

We consider the development of multifluid models for partially ionized multispecies plasmas. The models are composed of a standard set of five-moment fluid equations for each species plus a description of electromagnetics. The most general model considered utilizes a full set of fluid equations for each charge state of each atomic species, plus a set of fluid equations for electrons. The fluid equations are coupled through source terms describing electromagnetic coupling, ionization, recombination, charge exchange, and elastic scattering collisions in the low-density coronal limit. The form of each of these source terms is described in detail, and references for required rate coefficients are identified for a diverse range of atomic species. Initial efforts have been made to extend these models to incorporate some higher-density collisional effects, including ionization potential depression and three- body recombination. Some reductions of the general multifluid model are considered. First, a reduced multifluid model is derived which averages over all of the charge states (including neutrals) of each atomic species in the general multifluid model. The resulting model maintains full consistency with the general multifluid model from which it is derived by leveraging a quasi-steady-state collisional ionization equilibrium assumption to recover the ionization fractions required to make use of the general collision models. Further reductions are briefly considered to derive certain components of a single-fluid magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) model. In this case, a generalized Ohm's law is obtained, and the standard MHD resistivity is expressed in terms of the collisional models used in the general multifluid model. A number of numerical considerations required to obtain robust implementations of these multifluid models are discussed. First, an algebraic flux correction (AFC) stabilization approach for a continuous Galerkin finite element discretization of the multifluid system is described in which the characteristic speeds used in the stabilization of the fluid systems are synchronized across all species in the model. It is demonstrated that this synchronization is crucial in order to obtain a robust discretization of the multifluid system. Additionally, several different formulations are considered for describing the electromagnetics portion of the multifluid system using nodal continuous Galerkin finite element discretizations. The formulations considered include a parabolic divergence cleaning method and an implicit projection method for the traditional curl formulation of Maxwell's equations, a purely- hyperbolic potential-based formulation of Maxwell's equations, and a mixed hyperbolic-elliptic potential-based formulation of Maxwell's equations. Some advantages and disadvantages of each formulation are explored to compare solution robustness and the ease of use of each formulation. Numerical results are presented to demonstrate the accuracy and robustness of various components of our implementation. Analytic solutions for a spatially homogeneous damped plasma oscillation are derived in order to verify the implementation of the source terms for electromagnetic coupling and elastic collisions between fluid species. Ionization balance as a function of electron temperature is evaluated for several atomic species of interest by comparing to steady-state calculations using various sets of ionization and recombination rate coefficients. Several test problems in one and two spatial dimensions are used to demonstrate the accuracy and robustness of the discretization and stabilization approach for the fluid components of the multifluid system. This includes standard test problems for electrostatic and electromagnetic shock tubes in the two-fluid and ideal shock-MHD limits, a cylindrical diocotron instability, and the GEM challenge magnetic reconnection problem. A one-dimensional simplified prototype of an argon gas puff configuration as deployed on Sandia's Z-machine is used as a demonstration to exercise the full range of capabilities associated with the general multifluid model.

Computer Methods in Applied Mechanics and Engineering

Badia, Santiago; Bonilla, Jesús; Mabuza, Sibusiso; Shadid, John N.

This work presents the design of nonlinear stabilization techniques for the finite element discretization of Euler equations in both steady and transient form. Implicit time integration is used in the case of the transient form. A differentiable local bounds preserving method has been developed, which combines a Rusanov artificial diffusion operator and a differentiable shock detector. Nonlinear stabilization schemes are usually stiff and highly nonlinear. This issue is mitigated by the differentiability properties of the proposed method. Moreover, in order to further improve the nonlinear convergence, we also propose a continuation method for a subset of the stabilization parameters. The resulting method has been successfully applied to steady and transient problems with complex shock patterns. Numerical experiments show that it is able to provide sharp and well resolved shocks. The importance of the differentiability is assessed by comparing the new scheme with its non-differentiable counterpart. Numerical experiments suggest that, for up to moderate nonlinear tolerances, the method exhibits improved robustness and nonlinear convergence behavior for steady problems. In the case of transient problem, we also observe a reduction in the computational cost.

In this work, a stabilized continuous Galerkin (CG) method for magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) is presented. Ideal, compressible inviscid MHD equations are discretized in space on unstructured meshes using piecewise linear or bilinear finite element bases to get a semi-discrete scheme. Stabilization is then introduced to the semi-discrete method in a strategy that follows the algebraic flux correction paradigm. This involves adding some artificial diffusion to the high order, semi-discrete method and mass lumping in the time derivative term. The result is a low order method that provides local extremum diminishing properties for hyperbolic systems. The difference between the low order method and the high order method is scaled element-wise using a limiter and added to the low order scheme. The limiter is solution dependent and computed via an iterative linearity preserving nodal variation limiting strategy. The stabilization also involves an optional consistent background high order dissipation that reduces phase errors. The resulting stabilized scheme is a semi-discrete method that can be applied to inviscid shock MHD problems and may be even extended to resistive and viscous MHD problems. To satisfy the divergence free constraint of the MHD equations, we add parabolic divergence cleaning to the system. Various time integration methods can be used to discretize the scheme in time. We demonstrate the robustness of the scheme by solving several shock MHD problems.

Muralikrishnan, Sriramkrishnan; Bui-Thanh, Tan; Shadid, John N.

We propose a multilevel approach for trace systems resulting from hybridized discontinuous Galerkin (HDG) methods. The key is to blend ideas from nested dissection, domain decomposition, and high-order characteristic of HDG discretizations. Specifically, we first create a coarse solver by eliminating and/or limiting the front growth in nested dissection. This is accomplished by projecting the trace data into a sequence of same or high-order polynomials on a set of increasingly h-coarser edges/faces. We then combine the coarse solver with a block-Jacobi fine scale solver to form a two-level solver/preconditioner. Numerical experiments indicate that the performance of the resulting two-level solver/preconditioner depends on the smoothness of the solution and can offer significant speedups and memory savings compared to the nested dissection direct solver. While the proposed algorithms are developed within the HDG framework, they are applicable to other hybrid(ized) high-order finite element methods. Moreover, we show that our multilevel algorithms can be interpreted as a multigrid method with specific intergrid transfer and smoothing operators. With several numerical examples from Poisson, pure transport, and convection-diffusion equations we demonstrate the robustness and scalability of the algorithms with respect to solution order. While scalability with mesh size in general is not guaranteed and depends on the smoothness of the solution and the type of equation, improving it is a part of future work.

Recent work has demonstrated that block preconditioning can scalably accelerate the performance of iterative solvers applied to linear systems arising in implicit multiphysics PDE simulations. The idea of block preconditioning is to decompose the system matrix into physical sub-blocks and apply individual specialized scalable solvers to each sub-block. It can be advantageous to block into simpler segregated physics systems or to block by discretization type. This strategy is particularly amenable to multiphysics systems in which existing solvers, such as multilevel methods, can be leveraged for component physics and to problems with disparate discretizations in which scalable monolithic solvers are rare. This work extends our recent work on scalable block preconditioning methods for structure-preserving discretizatons of the Maxwell equations and our previous work in MHD system solvers to the context of multifluid electromagnetic plasma systems. We argue how a block preconditioner can address both the disparate discretization, as well as strongly-coupled off-diagonal physics that produces fast time-scales (e.g. plasma and cyclotron frequencies). We propose a block preconditioner for plasma systems that allows reuse of existing multigrid solvers for different degrees of freedom while capturing important couplings, and demonstrate the algorithmic scalability of this approach at time-scales of interest.

Multi-fluid plasma models, where an electron fluid is modeled in addition to multiple ion and neutral species as well as the full set of Maxwell's equations, are useful for representing physics beyond the scope of classic MHD. This advantage presents challenges in appropriately dealing with electron dynamics and electromagnetic behavior characterized by the plasma and cyclotron frequencies and the speed of light. For physical systems, such as those near the MHD asymptotic regime, this requirement drastically increases runtimes for explicit time integration even though resolving fast dynamics may not be critical for accuracy. Implicit time integration methods, with efficient solvers, can help to step over fast time-scales that constrain stability, but do not strongly influence accuracy. As an extension, Implicit-explicit (IMEX) schemes provide an additional mechanism to choose which dynamics are evolved using an expensive implicit solve or resolved using a fast explicit solve. In this study, in addition to IMEX methods we also consider a physics compatible exact sequence spatial discretization. This combines nodal bases (H-Grad) for fluid dynamics with a set of vector bases (H-Curl and H-Div) for Maxwell's equations. This discretization allows for multi-fluid plasma modeling without violating Gauss' laws for the electric and magnetic fields. This initial study presents a discussion of the major elements of this formulation and focuses on demonstrating accuracy in the linear wave regime and in the MHD limit for both a visco-resistive and a dispersive ideal MHD problem.

Magnetically driven experiments supporting pulsed-power utilize a wide range of configurations, including wire-arrays, gas-puffs, flyer plates, and cylindrical liners. This experimental flexibility is critical to supporting radiation effects, dynamic materials, magneto-inertial-fusion (MIF), and basic high energy density laboratory physics (HEDP) efforts. Ultimately, the rate at which these efforts progress is limited by our understanding of the complex plasma physics of these systems. Our effort has been to begin to develop an advanced algorithmic structure and a R&D code implementa- tion for a plasma physics simulation capability based on the five-moment multi-fluid / full-Maxwell plasma model. This model can be used for inclusion of multiple fluid species (e.g., electrons, multiple charge state ions, and neutrals) and allows for generalized collisional interactions between species, models for ioniza- tion/recombination, magnetized Braginskii collisional transport, dissipative effects, and can be readily ex- tended to incorporate radiation transport physics. In the context of pulsed-power simulations this advanced model will help to allow SNL to computationally simulate the dense continuum regions of the physical load (e.g. liner implosions, flyer plates) as well as partial power-flow losses in the final gap region of the inner MITL. In this report we briefly summarize results of applying a preliminary version of this model in the con- text of verification type problems, and some initial magnetic implosion relevant prototype problems. The MIF relevant prototype problems include results from fully-implicit / implicit-explicit (IMEX) resistive MHD as well as full multifluid EM plasma formulations. Acknowledgements The authors would like to acknowledge the help of Wyatt Hagen, Jesus Bonilla, Richard Kramer, Duncan McGregor, Allen Robinson, Greg Radtke, Matt Bettencourt, Kieth Cartwright, Kris Beckwith, Chris Jennings, Russel Hooper, and Jose Pacheco for helpful discussions on the form of the multifluid plasma model, verifica- tion problems, and application prototypes. John Carpenter for help with integrating the UTRI EoS capability and for delivering specific EoS models for our use.