We consider the numerical integration of problems modelling phenomena in shallow water in 3 spatial dimensions. If the governing partial differential equations for such problems are spatially discretized, then the righthand side of the resulting system of ordinary differential equations can be split into terms f1, f2, f3 and f4, respectively representing the spatial derivative terms with respect to the x, y and z directions, and the interaction terms. It is typical for shallow water applications that the interaction term f4 is nonstiff and that the function f3 corresponding with the vertical spatial direction is much more stiff than the functions f1 and f2 corresponding with the horizontal spatial directions. The reason is that in shallow seas the gridsize in the vertical direction is several orders of magnitude smaller than in the horizontal directions. In order to solve the initial value problem (IVP) for these systems numerically, we need a stiff IVP solver, which is necessarily implicit, requiring the iterative solution of large systems of implicit relations. The aim of this paper is the design of an efficient iteration process based on approximate factorization. Stability properties of the resulting integration method are compared with those of a number of integration methods from the literature. Finally, a performance test on a shallow water transport problem is reported.

Modelling, Analysis and Simulation [MAS]
Computational Dynamics

van der Houwen, P.J, & Sommeijer, B.P. (1998). Approximate factorization in shallow water applications. Modelling, Analysis and Simulation [MAS]. CWI.