A new hybrid integral representation for frequency domain scattering in layered media

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A variety of problems in acoustic and electromagnetic scattering require the evaluation of impedance or layered media Green's functions. Given a point source located in an unbounded half-space or an infinitely extended layer, Sommerfeld and others showed that Fourier analysis combined with contour integration provides a systematic and broadly effective approach, leading to what is generally referred to as the Sommerfeld integral representation. When either the source or target is at some distance from an infinite boundary, the number of degrees of freedom needed to resolve the scattering response is very modest. When both are near an interface, however, the Sommerfeld integral involves a very large range of integration and its direct application becomes unwieldy. Historically, three schemes have been employed to overcome this difficulty: the method of images, contour deformation, and asymptotic methods of various kinds. None of these methods make use of classical layer potentials in physical space, despite their advantages in terms of adaptive resolution and high-order accuracy. The reason for this is simple: layer potentials are impractical in layered media or half-space geometries since they require the discretization of an infinite boundary. In this paper, we propose a hybrid method which combines layer potentials (physical-space) on a finite portion of the interface together with a Sommerfeld-type (Fourier) correction. We prove that our method is efficient and rapidly convergent for arbitrarily located sources and targets, and show that the scheme is particularly effective when solving scattering problems for objects which are close to the half-space boundary or even embedded across a layered media interface.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalApplied and Computational Harmonic Analysis
StateAccepted/In press - Oct 8 2015


  • Electromagnetics
  • Half-space
  • Helmholtz
  • Integral equation
  • Layered media
  • Scattering
  • Sommerfeld

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Mathematics


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