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Binary black hole simulations and implicit time-stepping

Harald Pfeiffer
Department of Physics, Caltech


Numerical simulations of black hole binaries have made tremendous progress over the last years. The usefulness of such simulations is limited by their tremendous computational cost, which ultimately results from a separation of time-scales: Emission of gravitational radiation drives the evolution of the binary toward smaller separation and eventual merger. The time-scale for inspiral is far longer than the dynamical time-scale of each black hole. Therefore, the currently deployed explicit time-steppers are severely limited by Courant instabilities. Implicit time-stepping algorithms provide an obvious route around the Courant limit, thus offering a tremendous potential to speed up the simulations. However, the complexity of Einstein's equations make this a highly non-trivial endevour. This talk will first present a general overview of the status of Black Hole simulations, followed by a status report on the ongoing work aimed at implementing modern implict/explicit (IMEX) evolution schemes for Einstein's equations.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009
11:00AM AP&M 2402