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A DG-IMEX Method for Two-moment Neutrino Transport: Nonlinear Solvers for Neutrino–Matter Coupling

by Ming Tse P Laiu, Eirik Endeve, Ran Chu, James A Harris, Otis E Messer Ii
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The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series
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Neutrino–matter interactions play an important role in core-collapse supernova (CCSN) explosions, as they contribute to both lepton number and/or four-momentum exchange between neutrinos and matter and thus act as the agent for neutrino-driven explosions. Due to the multiscale nature of neutrino transport in CCSN simulations, an implicit treatment of neutrino–matter interactions is desired, which requires solutions of coupled nonlinear systems in each step of the time integration scheme. In this paper, we design and compare nonlinear iterative solvers for implicit systems with energy-coupling neutrino–matter interactions commonly used in CCSN simulations. Specifically, we consider electron neutrinos and antineutrinos, which interact with static matter configurations through the Bruenn 85 opacity set. The implicit systems arise from the discretization of a nonrelativistic two-moment model for neutrino transport, which employs the discontinuous Galerkin (DG) method for phase-space discretization and an implicit–explicit (IMEX) time integration scheme. In the context of this DG-IMEX scheme, we propose two approaches to formulate the nonlinear systems: a coupled approach and a nested approach. For each approach, the resulting systems are solved with Anderson-accelerated fixed-point iteration and Newton's method. The performance of these four iterative solvers has been compared on relaxation problems with various degrees of collisionality, as well as proto–neutron star deleptonization problems with several matter profiles adopted from spherically symmetric CCSN simulations. Numerical results suggest that the nested Anderson-accelerated fixed-point solver is more efficient than other tested solvers for solving implicit nonlinear systems with energy-coupling neutrino–matter interactions.