Variational Formulations for Explicit Runge-Kutta Methods
Variational space-time formulations for partial di fferential equations have been of great interest in the last decades, among other things, because they allow to develop mesh-adaptive algorithms. Since it is known that implicit time marching schemes have variational structure, they are often employed for adaptivity. Previously, Galerkin formulations of explicit methods were introduced for ordinary di fferential equations employing speci fic inexact quadrature rules. In this work, we prove that the explicit Runge-Kutta methods can be expressed as discontinuous-in-time Petrov-Galerkin methods for the linear di ffusion equation. We systematically build trial and test functions that, after exact integration in time, lead to one, two, and general stage explicit Runge-Kutta methods. This approach enables us to reproduce the existing time-domain (goal-oriented) adaptive algorithms using explicit methods in time.