A New Discrete Implicit Monte Carlo Scheme for Simulating Radiative Transfer Problems

Elad Steinberg, Shay I. Heizler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We present a new algorithm for radiative transfer - based on a statistical Monte Carlo approach - that does not suffer from teleportation effects, on the one hand, and yields smooth results, on the other hand. Implicit Monte Carlo (IMC) techniques for modeling radiative transfer have existed from the 1970s. When they are used for optically thick problems, however, the basic algorithm suffers from "teleportation"errors, where the photons propagate faster than the exact physical behavior, due to the absorption-blackbody emission processes. One possible solution is to use semianalog Monte Carlo, in its new implicit form (ISMC), which uses two kinds of particles, photons and discrete material particles. This algorithm yields excellent teleportation-free results, but it also produces noisier solutions (relative to classic IMC), due to its discrete nature. Here, we derive a new Monte Carlo algorithm, Discrete Implicit Monte Carlo (DIMC), which also uses the idea of two kinds of discrete particles, and thus does not suffer from teleportation errors. DIMC implements the IMC discretization and creates new radiation photons for each time step, unlike ISMC. Using the continuous absorption technique, DIMC yields smooth results like classic IMC. One of the main elements of the algorithm is the avoidance of the explosion of the particle population, by using particle merging. We test the new algorithm on 1D and 2D cylindrical problems, and show that it yields smooth, teleportation-free results. We finish by demonstrating the power of the new algorithm on a classic radiative hydrodynamic problem - an opaque radiative shock wave. This demonstrates the power of the new algorithm for astrophysical scenarios.

Original languageEnglish
Article number14
JournalAstrophysical Journal, Supplement Series
Volume258
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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