Computer Science NASC Seminar

Fast Solvers for Geodynamic Flows

Scott MacLachlan, Tufts University

October 14, 2011 10:00AM
Warren Weaver Hall, Room 1302
251 Mercer Street
New York, NY, 10012-1110

Fall 2011 NASC Seminars Calendar


Geodynamic flows, such as the convection within the Earth's mantle,
are characterized by the extremely viscous nature of the flow, as well
as the dependence of the viscosity on temperature. As such, a
PDE-based approach, coupling the (stationary) Stokes Equations for
viscous flow with a time-dependent energy equation, offers an accurate
mathematical model of these flows. While the theory and practice of
solving the Stokes Equations is well-understood in the case of an
isoviscous fluid, many open questions remain in the variable-viscosity
case that is relevant to mantle convection, where large jumps occur in
the fluid viscosity over short spatial scales. I will discuss recent
progress on developing efficient parallel solvers for geodynamic
flows, using algebraic multigrid methods within block-factorization

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