Mimetic Methods for Lagrangian Relaxation of Magnetic Fields

Simon Candelaresi, David Pontin, Gunnar Hornig
Division of Mathematics, University of Dundee, Dundee, UK
arXiv:1405.0942 [physics.plasm-ph], (5 May 2014)



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We present a new code that performs a relaxation of a magnetic field towards a force-free state (Beltrami field) using a Lagrangian numerical scheme. Beltrami fields are of interest for the dynamics of many technical and astrophysical plasmas as they are the lowest energy states that the magnetic field can reach. The numerical method strictly preserves the magnetic flux and the topology of magnetic field lines. In contrast to other implementations we use mimetic operators for the spatial derivatives in order to improve accuracy for high distortions of the grid. Compared with schemes using direct derivatives we find that the final state of the simulation approximates a force-free state with a significantly higher accuracy. We implement the scheme in a code which runs on graphical processing units (GPU), which leads to an enhanced computing speed compared to previous relaxation codes.
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