Implicit-explicit (IMEX) schemes have been widely used, especially in conjunction with spectral methods, for the time integration of spatially discretized PDEs of diffusion-convection type. Typically, an implicit scheme is used for the diffusion term and an explicit scheme is used for the convection term. Reaction-diffusion problems can also be approximated in this manner. In this work we systematically analyze the performance of such schemes, propose improved new schemes and pay particular attention to their relative performance in the context of fast multigrid algorithms and of aliasing reduction for spectral methods.
For the prototype linear advection-diffusion equation, a stability analysis for first, second, third and fourth order multistep IMEX schemes is performed.
Stable schemes permitting large time steps for a wide variety of problems and yielding appropriate decay of high frequency error modes are identified.
Numerical experiments demonstrate that weak decay of high frequency modes can lead to extra iterations on the finest grid when using multigrid computations with finite difference spatial discretization, and to aliasing when using spectral collocation for spatial discretization. When this behaviour occurs, use of weakly damping schemes such as the popular combination of Crank-Nicolson with second order Adams-Bashforth is discouraged and better alternatives are proposed.
Our findings are demonstrated on several examples.
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