Superconducting coils are used for accelerator magnets to achieve very high magnetic fields. A major challenge is the quench phenomenon which is a sudden shift from superconductive to normal-conducting state. Such a quench can lead to heat losses and in the worst case to damages of the magnet.
Quenches not only impose physical, but also numerical challenges: While a magnet is about 10m long, quenches occur in the range of mm. To deal with this strong multi-scale problem, a special quasi-3D (Q3D) method is employed which utilizes hybrid basis functions.
The Q3D discretization is chosen at the beginning of the simulation to achieve an optimal representation of the steep temperature gradients of the quench. However, as the quench propagates, this initial discretization may turn inoptimal and lead to rising numerical errors. Therefore, adaptive mesh strategies and error estimators play an important role in the quench simulation and should be investigated in this work.