High-order bound-preserving finite difference methods for miscible displacements in porous media

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Department of Mathematical Sciences


In this paper, we develop high-order bound-preserving (BP) finite difference (FD) methods for the coupled system of compressible miscible displacements. We consider the problem with multi-component fluid mixture and the (volumetric) concentration of the jth component, cj, should be between 0 and 1. It is well known that cj does not satisfy a maximum-principle. Hence most of the existing BP techniques cannot be applied directly. The main idea in this paper is to construct the positivity-preserving techniques to all c'js and enforce ∑jc j = 1 simultaneously to obtain physically relevant approximations. By doing so, we have to treat the time derivative of the pressure dp/dt as a source in the concentration equation and choose suitable “consistent” numerical fluxes in the pressure and concentration equations. Recently, the high-order BP discontinuous Galerkin (DG) methods for miscible displacements were introduced in [4]. However, the BP technique for DG methods is not straightforward extendable to high-order FD schemes. There are two main difficulties. Firstly, it is not easy to determine the time step size in the BP technique. In finite difference schemes, we need to choose suitable time step size first and then apply the flux limiter to the numerical fluxes. Subsequently, we can compute the source term in the concentration equation, leading to a new time step constraint that may not be satisfied by the time step size applied in the flux limiter. Therefore, it would be very difficult to determine how large the time step is. Secondly, the general treatment for the diffusion term, e.g. centered difference, in miscible displacements may require a stencil whose size is larger than that for the convection term. It would be better to construct a new spatial discretization for the diffusion term such that a smaller stencil can be used. In this paper, we will solve both problems. We first construct a special discretization of the convection term, which yields the desired approximations of the source. Then we can find out the time step size that suitable for the BP technique and apply the flux limiters. Moreover, we will also construct a special algorithm for the diffusion term whose stencil is the same as that used for the convection term. Numerical experiments will be given to demonstrate the high-order accuracy and good performance of the numerical technique.

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Journal of Computational Physics