Adaptive isogeometric finite element analysis of steady-state groundwater flow
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionInternational journal for numerical and analytical methods in geomechanics (Print). 2015, 40 738-765. 10.1002/nag.2425
Numerical challenges occur in the simulation of groundwater flow problems because of complex boundary conditions, varying material properties, presence of sources or sinks in the flow domain, or a combination of these. In this paper, we apply adaptive isogeometric finite element analysis using locally refined (LR) B-splines to address these types of problems. The fundamentals behind isogeometric analysis and LR B-splines are briefly presented. Galerkin's method is applied to the standard weak formulation of the governing equation to derive the linear system of equations. A posteriori error estimates are calculated to identify which B-splines should be locally refined. The error estimates are calculated based on recovery of the L2-projected solution. The adaptive analysis method is first illustrated by performing simulation of benchmark problems with analytical solutions. Numerical applications to two-dimensional groundwater flow problems are then presented. The problems studied are flow around an impervious corner, flow around a cutoff wall, and flow in a heterogeneous medium. The convergence rates obtained with adaptive analysis using local refinement were, in general, observed to be of optimal order in contrast to simulations with uniform refinement.