A sequential least squares method for elliptic equations in non-divergence form

Ruo Li, Fanyi Yang

We develop a new least squares method for solving the second-order elliptic equations in non-divergence form. Two least-squares-type functionals are proposed for solving the equations in two steps. We first obtain a numerical approximation to the gradient in a piecewisely irrotational polynomial space. Then together with the numerical gradient, we seek a numerical solution of the primitive variable in continuous finite element space. The variational setting naturally provides a posteriori error which could be used in an adaptive refinement algorithm. The error estimates in $L^2$ norm and energy norms for both two unknowns are derived. By a series of numerical experiments, we verify the convergence rates and show the efficiency of the adaptive algorithm.

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