Assessment of mixed finite element method applied to one-dimensional transient unsaturated flow

Debasmita Misra, John L. Nieber

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

Abstract

Accurate simulation of Darcy flux is essential to simulate contaminant transport in the unsaturated zone accurately. The mixed finite element method has been used to obtain highly accurate flux distribution in unsaturated zone flow applications. We have demonstrated that application of mixed finite element method to steady state unsaturated flow yields accurate moisture content and flux profiles (Misra and Nieber, 2003, ASAE, Paper No. 032112). The objective of this paper is to present a few case studies of application of mixed finite element method to transient unsaturated flow problems, compare those to the solution obtained from the conventional finite element methods and to analyze any special properties of the solutions obtained from the mixed finite element methods. It has been shown in this paper that the solutions obtained from the mixed finite element method are highly accurate in rapidly changing flux distributions and heterogeneous flow distributions. The effect of approximating the hydraulic conductivity or the flux over the element has been discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages1795-1817
Number of pages23
StatePublished - Dec 1 2004
EventASAE Annual International Meeting 2004 - Ottawa, ON, Canada
Duration: Aug 1 2004Aug 4 2004

Other

OtherASAE Annual International Meeting 2004
Country/TerritoryCanada
CityOttawa, ON
Period8/1/048/4/04

Keywords

  • Darcy flux
  • Mixed finite element method
  • Numerical methods
  • Richards equation
  • Unsaturated flow

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