Bridging the Gap: Bringing Measurements and Computational Results Together

Author: Vince Rodriguez

Is there a gap between Computational and Measurement Electromagnetics? The author believes that there is. That those involved in engineering electromagnetics using numerical methods and those performing measurements of electromagnetic devices have drifted apart in the recent years. The improvement of numerical tools available commercially seems to have some part in the widening of this gap. Additionally the improvement of measurement tools and instrumentation seem to have given the community of EM metrologist, the belief of better measurements and results. As the author studied this apparent gap he believes that the ease of use of these tools has reduced the amount of training necessary. Also the author believes that the confidence on the tools has eliminated the use of a priori knowledge of the problem’s solution as well as a dose of skepticism. While computational electromagneticists seem to have a blind faith on their tools, the metrology group seem to believe that the computational results are models with little place in the real world where they perform the measurements. As a way to try to bridge this gap the author looks at a series of case studies where numerical results benefit form measurements and measurements benefit from numerical results. In conclusion, the author believes that the most important ingredient in closing the apparent gap between measurements and computed results is to question the results of the simulation or measurement and to understand if they are physical results or errors of some kind. The lack of that skepticism may be tied to the easy-to-use tools available that minimize the need for training on the underlining theory of the phenomena being measured or computed.

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