A fully consistent and conservative vertically adaptive coordinate system for SLIM 3D v0.4 with an application to the thermocline oscillations of Lake Tanganyika

Philippe Delandmeter, Jonathan Lambrechts, Vincent Legat, Valentin Vallaeys, Jaya Naithani, Wim Thiery, Jean-François Remade, Eric Deleersnijder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
15 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

The discontinuous Galerkin (DG) finite element method is well suited for the modelling, with a relatively small number of elements, of three-dimensional flows exhibiting strong velocity or density gradients. Its performance can be highly enhanced by having recourse to r-adaptivity. Here, a vertical adaptive mesh method is developed for DG finite elements. This method, originally designed for finite difference schemes, is based on the vertical diffusion of the mesh nodes, with the diffusivity controlled by the density jumps at the mesh element interfaces.
The mesh vertical movement is determined by means of a conservative arbitrary Lagrangian–Eulerian (ALE) formulation. Though conservativity is naturally achieved, tracer consistency is obtained by a suitable construction of the mesh vertical velocity field, which is defined in such a way that it is fully compatible with the tracer and continuity equations at a discrete level.
The vertically adaptive mesh approach is implemented in the three-dimensional version of the geophysical and environmental flow Second-generation Louvain-la-Neuve Ice-ocean Model (SLIM 3D; www.climate.be/slim). Idealised benchmarks, aimed at simulating the oscillations of a sharp thermocline, are dealt with. Then, the relevance of the vertical adaptivity technique is assessed by simulating thermocline oscillations of Lake Tanganyika. The results are compared to measured vertical profiles of temperature, showing similar stratification and outcropping events.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1161-1179
Number of pages19
JournalGeoscientific Model Development
Volume11
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

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