FEM - Finite Element Method BEM - Boundary Element Method

If we had access to "enough" computational resources (to discretize the entire volume domain in FEM to the same degree of fineness, as the boundary in the BEM), would there be any reasons why the BEM approach would still be preferred over FEM for solving contact problems?

  • $\begingroup$ Pulling this out of my ass, but does FEM always converge better than BEM? $\endgroup$
    – DKNguyen
    Commented Jul 23, 2022 at 18:28
  • $\begingroup$ What’s "enough" ? Is that defined by what you need? Or what you ask for? Or what you get? As in what the boss will pay for? $\endgroup$
    – Solar Mike
    Commented Jul 23, 2022 at 18:35

1 Answer 1


Theoretically, BEM can give smooth solution in all volume (except boundary), and FEM - discrete one. More dimensional mesh is harder to generate and it is more probably to be worse quality on complex geometries than boundary mesh, this will lead to more error and even inconvergence.


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