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Dispersive and Dissipative Properties of Discontinuous Galerkin Finite Element Methods for the Second-Order Wave Equation

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Discontinuous Galerkin finite element methods (DGFEM) offer certain advantages over standard continuous finite element methods when applied to the spatial discretisation of the acoustic wave equation. For instance, the mass matrix has a block diagonal structure which, used in conjunction with an explicit time stepping scheme, gives an extremely economical scheme for time domain simulation. This feature is ubiquitous and extends to other time-dependent wave problems such as Maxwell’s equations. An important consideration in computational wave propagation is the dispersive and dissipative properties of the discretisation scheme in comparison with those of the original system. We investigate these properties for two popular DGFEM schemes: the interior penalty discontinuous Galerkin finite element method applied to the second-order wave equation and a more general family of schemes applied to the corresponding first order system. We show how the analysis of the multi-dimensional case may be reduced to consideration of one-dimensional problems. We derive the dispersion error for various schemes and conjecture on the generalisation to higher order approximation in space

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Ainsworth, M., Monk, P. & Muniz, W. Dispersive and Dissipative Properties of Discontinuous Galerkin Finite Element Methods for the Second-Order Wave Equation. J Sci Comput 27, 5–40 (2006).

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