Quotient-space boundary element methods for scattering at complex screens

Xavier Claeys, Lorenzo Giacometti, Ralf Hiptmair, Carolina Urzúa-Torres

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3 Citations (Scopus)
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A complex screen is an arrangement of panels that may not be even locally orientable because of junction lines. A comprehensive trace space framework for first-kind variational boundary integral equations on complex screens has been established in Claeys and Hiptmair (Integr Equ Oper Theory 77:167–197, 2013. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00020-013-2085-x) for the Helmholtz equation, and in Claeys and Hiptmair (Integr Equ Oper Theory 84:33–68, 2016. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00020-015-2242-5) for Maxwell’s equations in frequency domain. The gist is a quotient space perspective that allows to make sense of jumps of traces as factor spaces of multi-trace spaces modulo single-trace spaces without relying on orientation. This paves the way for formulating first-kind boundary integral equations in weak form posed on energy trace spaces. In this article we extend that idea to the Galerkin boundary element (BE) discretization of first-kind boundary integral equations. Instead of trying to approximate jumps directly, the new quotient space boundary element method employs a Galerkin BE approach in multi-trace boundary element spaces. This spawns discrete boundary integral equations with large null spaces comprised of single-trace functions. Yet, since the right-hand-sides of the linear systems of equations are consistent, Krylov subspace iterative solvers like GMRES are not affected by the presence of a kernel and still converge to a solution. This is strikingly confirmed by numerical tests.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1193-1221
Number of pages29
JournalBIT Numerical Mathematics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Complex screens
  • Galerkin boundary element method
  • Quotient space boundary element method


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