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Tree-based solvers for adaptive mesh refinement code flash - II: radiation transport module TreeRay

Wünsch, Richard, Walch, Stefanie, Dinnbier, Frantisek, Seifried, Daniel, Haid, Sebastian, Klepitko, Andre, Whitworth, Anthony P. ORCID: and Palous, Jan 2021. Tree-based solvers for adaptive mesh refinement code flash - II: radiation transport module TreeRay. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 505 (3) , 3730–3754. 10.1093/mnras/stab1482

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The treatment of radiative transfer with multiple radiation sources is a critical challenge in simulations of star formation and the interstellar medium (ISM). In this paper, we present the novel TREERAY method for solving general radiative transfer problems, based on reverse ray-tracing combined with tree-based accelerated integration. We implement TREERAY in the adaptive mesh refinement code FLASH, as a module of the tree solver developed by Wünsch et al. However, the method itself is independent of the host code and can be implemented in any grid-based or particle-based hydrodynamics code. A key advantage of TREERAY is that its computational cost is independent of the number of sources, making it suitable for simulations with many point sources (e.g. massive star clusters) as well as simulations where diffuse emission is important. A very efficient communication and tree-walk strategy enable TREERAY to achieve almost ideal parallel scalings. TREERAY can easily be extended with sub-modules to treat radiative transfer at different wavelengths and to implement related physical processes. Here, we focus on ionizing radiation and use the on-the-spot approximation to test the method and its parameters. The ability to set the tree solver time-step independently enables the speedy calculation of radiative transfer in a multiphase ISM, where the hydrodynamic time-step is typically limited by the sound speed of the hot gas produced in stellar wind bubbles or supernova remnants. We show that complicated simulations of star clusters with feedback from multiple massive stars become feasible with TREERAY.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Advanced Research Computing @ Cardiff (ARCCA)
Physics and Astronomy
Publisher: Royal Astronomical Society
ISSN: 0035-8711
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 29 July 2021
Date of Acceptance: 17 May 2021
Last Modified: 17 Jun 2024 14:47

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