Guaranteed Verification of Finite Element Solutions of Heat Conduction



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This dissertation addresses the accuracy of a-posteriori error estimators for finite element solutions of problems with high orthotropy especially for cases where rather coarse meshes are used, which are often encountered in engineering computations. We present sample computations which indicate lack of robustness of all standard residual estimators with respect to high orthotropy. The investigation shows that the main culprit behind the lack of robustness of residual estimators is the coarseness of the finite element meshes relative to the thickness of the boundary and interface layers in the solution.

With the introduction of an elliptic reconstruction procedure, a new error estimator based on the solution of the elliptic reconstruction problem is invented to estimate the exact error measured in space-time C-norm for both semi-discrete and fully discrete finite element solutions to linear parabolic problem. For a fully discrete solution, a temporal error estimator is also introduced to evaluate the discretization error in the temporal field. In the meantime, the implicit Neumann subdomain residual estimator for elliptic equations, which involves the solution of the local residual problem, is combined with the elliptic reconstruction procedure to carry out a posteriori error estimation for the linear parabolic problem. Numerical examples are presented to illustrate the superconvergence properties in the elliptic reconstruction and the performance of the bounds based on the space-time C-norm.

The results show that in the case of L^2 norm for smooth solution there is no superconvergence in elliptic reconstruction for linear element, and for singular solution the superconvergence does not exist for element of any order while in the case of energy norm the superconvergence always exists in elliptic reconstruction. The research also shows that the performance of the bounds based on space-time C-norm is robust, and in the case of fully discrete finite element solution the bounds for the temporal error are sharp.