MODA: a new algorithm to compute optical depths in multidimensional hydrodynamic simulations
1 TU Darmstadt, Institut für Kernphysik Theoriezentrum, Schlossgartenstr. 2, 64289 Darmstadt, Germany
2 The Oskar Klein Center, Department of Astronomy, AlbaNova, Stockholm University, 106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
3 Department of Physics, University of Basel, Klingelbergst. 82, 4056 Basel, Switzerland
Received: 4 March 2014
Accepted: 5 June 2014
Aims. We introduce the multidimensional optical depth algorithm (MODA) for the calculation of optical depths in approximate multidimensional radiative transport schemes, equally applicable to neutrinos and photons. Motivated by (but not limited to) neutrino transport in three-dimensional simulations of core-collapse supernovae and neutron star mergers, our method makes no assumptions about the geometry of the matter distribution, apart from expecting optically transparent boundaries.
Methods. Based on local information about opacities, the algorithm figures out an escape route that tends to minimize the optical depth without assuming any predefined paths for radiation. Its adaptivity makes it suitable for a variety of astrophysical settings with complicated geometry (e.g., core-collapse supernovae, compact binary mergers, tidal disruptions, star formation, etc.). We implement the MODA algorithm into both a Eulerian hydrodynamics code with a fixed, uniform grid and into an SPH code where we use a tree structure that is otherwise used for searching neighbors and calculating gravity.
Results. In a series of numerical experiments, we compare the MODA results with analytically known solutions. We also use snapshots from actual 3D simulations and compare the results of MODA with those obtained with other methods, such as the global and local ray-by-ray method. It turns out that MODA achieves excellent accuracy at a moderate computational cost. In appendix we also discuss implementation details and parallelization strategies.
Key words: methods: numerical / neutrinos / radiative transfer
© ESO, 2014