Fast direct solver for Poisson equation in a 2D elliptical domain

Ming-Chih Lai*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


In this article, we extend our previous work (M.-C. Lai and W.-C. Wang, Numer Methods Partial Differential Eq 18:56-68, 2002) for developing some fast Poisson solvers on 2D polar and spherical geometries to an elliptical domain. Instead of solving the equation in an irregular Cartesian geometry, we formulate the equation in elliptical coordinates. The solver relies on representing the solution as a truncated Fourier series, then solving the differential equations of Fourier coefficients by finite difference discretizations. Using a grid by shifting half mesh away from the pole and incorporating the derived numerical boundary value, the difficulty of coordinate singularity can be elevated easily. Unlike the case of 2D disk domain, the present difference equation for each Fourier mode is coupled with its conjugate mode through the numerical boundary value near the pole; thus, those two modes are solved simultaneously. Both second- and fourth-order accurate schemes for Dirichlet and Neumann problems are presented. In particular, the fourth-order accuracy can be achieved by a three-point compact stencil which is in contrast to a five-point long stencil for the disk case.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)72-81
Number of pages10
JournalNumerical Methods for Partial Differential Equations
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2004


  • Compact scheme
  • Elliptical coordinates
  • Fast Poisson solver
  • Symmetry condition

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