A Convergence Proof for Adaptive Finite Elements without Lower Bound

. IMA Journal of Numerical Analysis 31 (3): 947-970 (2011)


We analyse the adaptive finite-element approximation to solutions of partial differential equations in variational formulation. Assuming well-posedness of the continuous problem and requiring only basic properties of the adaptive algorithm, we prove convergence of the sequence of discrete solutions to the true one. The proof is based on the ideas by Morin, Siebert and Veeser but replaces local efficiency of the estimator by a local density property of the adaptively generated finite-element spaces. As a result, estimators without a discrete lower bound are also included in our theory. The assumptions of the presented framework are fulfilled by a large class of important applications, estimators and adaptive strategies.

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