Topic/Type: 1. Plasma Simulation, Oral

Design and progress in developing a 3D parallel object-oriented Vlasov-Fokker-Planck code

M. Tzoufras1, A. R. Bell1, R. M. G. Trines2, P. A. Norreys2, F. S. Tsung3

1 University of Oxford (UK)
2 Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (UK)
3 UCLA (USA)

We report on our progress in developing a 3D parallel object-oriented Vlasov-Fokker-Planck code to study the physics of electron transport in the context of HiPER. The expansion of the electron distribution function to spherical harmonics is utilized [1] so as to reduce the size of the computational grid compared to standard VFP codes. The object-oriented design allows for interchangeability of numerical operators, thereby making it possible to incorporate a number of numerical methods and measure their performance in terms of speed, accuracy and stability. Parallelism is achieved by attaching a 'parallel class' to the code.

We present benchmarks for standard plasma physics problems with the most up-to-date version of the code. The types of physical problems for which the expansion to spherical harmonics yields the most/fewest benefits are discussed. It is shown that even for problems that attack the main weakness of our approach, i.e. the singularity at p=0, simulations can be performed stably and with very high accuracy.

[1] A. R. Bell et al., Plasma Phys. Control. Fusion 48 (2006) R37-R57.