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Finite Element Exterior Calculus for Hamiltonian PDEs

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We consider the application of finite element exterior calculus (FEEC) methods to a class of canonical Hamiltonian PDE systems involving differential forms. Solutions to these systems satisfy a local multisymplectic conservation law, which generalizes the more familiar symplectic conservation law for Hamiltonian systems of ODEs, and which is connected with physically-important reciprocity phenomena, such as Lorentz reciprocity in electromagnetics. We characterize hybrid FEEC methods whose numerical traces satisfy a version of the multisymplectic conservation law, and we apply this characterization to several specific classes of FEEC methods, including conforming Arnold–Falk–Winther-type methods and various hybridizable discontinuous Galerkin (HDG) methods. Interestingly, the HDG -type and other nonconforming methods are shown, in general, to be multisymplectic in a stronger sense than the conforming FEEC methods. This substantially generalizes previous work of McLachlan and Stern [Found. Comput. Math., 20 (2020), pp. 35–69] on the more restricted class of canonical Hamiltonian PDEs in the de Donder–Weyl grad-div form.

This talk is part of the Applied and Computational Analysis series.

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