Afivo, short for Adaptive Finite Volume Octree, is a framework for adaptive mesh refinement on quadtree (2D) and octree (3D) meshes with shared memory parallelization (OpenMP) and geometric multigrid methods. It has been designed to efficiently solve elliptic partial differential equations such as Poisson’s equation in combination with user implemented physics applications.

Afivo is generic and can be applied to any problem that requires adaptive refinement and/or a fast elliptic solver; examples include computing electrostatic or gravitational potentials, or solving a heat equation implicitly. Originally, afivo and its extension afivo-streamer were developed to model the early stages of electric discharges, so called streamers, that appear, e.g., in lightning and in high voltage technology.

Afivo and afivo-streamer were developed in the Multiscale Dynamics group. Afivo-streamer replaces ARCoS, short for Adaptive Refinement Code of Streamers, that was developed earlier in the same group. ARCoS is still used by some groups internationally. The application domains of afivo-streamer and of ARCoS are atmospheric lightning, plasma processing and high voltage technology.