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Published January 1982 | public
Journal Article

Numerical solution of the atmospheric diffusion equation for chemically reacting flows


A comprehensive study of numerical techniques for solving the atmospheric diffusion equation is reported. Operator splitting methods are examined in which the three-dimensional problem is converted into a sequence of one-dimensional problems. A Galerkin, linear finite element scheme with a nonlinear filter is found to be computationally superior to the other methods tested for the advection-diffusion components. The chemical reaction dynamics component, treated within the splitting scheme, is generally highly stiff. A second-order predictor, iterated corrector technique, in combination with an asymptotic treatment of the stiff components, is found to be computationally superior for the chemical kinetics. The validity of the pseudo steady state approximation for certain reactive species is also investigated.

Additional Information

© 1982 by Academic Press, Inc. Received May 15, 1981. This work was supported by the State of California Air Resources Board under Contracts A5-046-87 and A7-187-30. Additional funding was provided by a Department of Energy Institutional Grant EY-76- G-03-1305. The assistance of Dr. T. R. Young of the Naval Research Laboratory, and Dr. J. W. Tilden of the Environmental Quality Laboratory is appreciated.

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