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Ansoft Designer Vs Ansoft HFSS

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Newbie level 5
Oct 29, 2007
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ansoft hfss map file example


I'm a user of HFSS. Can anyone explain me the differences between HFSS and Designer?

What are the suitable applications of each one?

Thank you!

hfss 10 compatible nexxim version

Designer: circuit simulator and planar EM simulator(2.5D MoM method).
HFSS : 3D structure EM simualtor(FEM method)
ansoft verses

JuanjoSF said:

I'm a user of HFSS. Can anyone explain me the differences between HFSS and Designer?

What are the suitable applications of each one?

Thank you!
Ansoft Designer® provides an integrated schematic and design management front-end for complex analog, RF and mixed-signal applications. By leveraging advanced electromagnetic field simulators dynamically linked to powerful circuit and system simulation, Ansoft Designer enables engineers to design, optimize, and validate component, circuit, and system performance long before building a prototype in hardware.

New in Ansoft Designer v3.5

Design Validation
Excitations from Circuit & Nexxim simulations now included in HFSS and planarEM co-simulations
Allows EM-based current densities and field values to include phase and amplitude information from circuit sources and design.
EM sub-circuits true field values can been visualized and radiation patterns can be calculated
Optional common reference node for dynamic link objects
Additional DRC commands including: overlap, overhang, enclose, notch
Planar EM simulation enhancements
Enhanced SOD calibration for planarEM elements
Calibration for CPW elements in planarEM
FSS mesh continuity
Methods to export near fields & currents
Enhanced port solver accuracy

Design Capture
DXF import - support for different x & y scales for imported blocks
3D view of linked HFSS and Q3D projects in Designer's 3D viewer
Enhanced speed
Object selection (picking) from 3D viewer
Schematic wiring help w/icons
Wire routing enhancements
Support for other types of graphics (logo's, bitmaps, etc.) in schematic
ANSI borders

GUI & Design Automation
Circuit translation from Designer to Nexxim schematics
Output variables from dynamic link objects visible in Designer

HFSS™ is the industry-standard software for S-parameter, Full-Wave SPICE™ extraction, and 3D electromagnetic field simulation of high-frequency and high-speed components. Engineers rely on the accuracy, capacity, and performance of HFSS to design on-chip embedded passives, IC packages, PCB interconnects, antennas, RF/microwave components, and biomedical devices.

HFSS improves engineering productivity, reduces development time, and better assures first-pass design success. HFSS v11 can solve complex geometries 2-5X faster and use half the memory, allowing users to expand beyond what they ever thought possible with simulation technology. Additionally, HFSS v11 includes new automation features, user-interface refinement, and data linking capability, making it easy to design, simulate, and validate complex high-performance RF, microwave, and millimeter-wave devices, high-speed channels, and complete power-delivery systems in modern, high-performance electronics.

ansi borders

Designer: Based on MOM, palanr circuits
HFSS : Base on FEM, 3D structure (narrow band)

forum ansoft designer

the main diference in planar circuits is that designer assumes an infinite substrate and hff not.


Azulykit said:
HFSS costs way more than Designer...........

huge difference. in resume you need planar em you should use designer, if you need more complex geometries simulations hfss, even complex than that you should use some nec based software like 4nec2.

ansoft designer mesh refinement

Why is NEC even better that HFSS for large and complex structures?

difference between designer hfss

it more versatile, for example look at my sputnik design. i dont think i could have done in such a simple way in hfss.

I'm an experienced HFSS user; I use it for waveguides RF simulations.
I now need to combine the S-parameters of different components of a waveguide network, so I thought I would do that with Ansoft Designer.
I exported the frequency sweep results from HFSS to Designer but now I'm a bit lost, as I don't know how to proceed.

More in detail, I have a 4-port device for which HFSS computed the S-matrix. Two of its port are to be closed on some RF loads, so that the overall device will be a 2-port device.
I know the s-parameters of the loads.
How to combine them all, in order to obtain the overall S-matrix?

Any help would be greatly appreciated!!

I have not visited this site for a while but thought I would make an addition to this thread.

HFSS is particularly useful when the structure being studied is irregular. Planar structures are often better addressed in Designer or other MOM packages as they often run faster. Very large structures are often out of HFSS's grasp because of the practical limits on RAM which increases as the model size increases. Recently HFSS has been modified to mitigate this.

If one is going to stay on the highway, Designer is a reasonable choice: but to go off-roading one needs HFSS. (A quote from an Ansoft application engineer)

Relative to the question about linking Designer and HFSS: Ansys/Ansoft is the best source for information on how to skin this cat. It is practical and a reasonable target, but I would recommend discussing the method with one of their technical support folks. You could also consider using idealized impedance boundaries on the two loaded ports of your four-port device and then work on the simulation in HFSS alone.

My bottom line is that I find HFSS essential. It is expensive in dollars, time, and compute resources. I have to note the strides made in the latest revisions to make it faster and able to handle larger problems.



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