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What is the General point of FEM?

What is the General point of FEM?

(OP)
I've just been assigned the task of creating a Finite Element Model (in SDRC-Ideas 8) which is to be used in an FDTD (Finite Difference Timed Domain) application (which one yet I do not know).  The purpose is for simulating High Frequency Antenna patterns.

In the past I built wire frame models in Ideas and used them with NEC (Numerical Electromagnetics Code) to calculate the Antenna patterns.  But now I'm working with higher frequencies which means that in order for the model to be "visible" to the high frequency radio waves I need to build solid models.  Which is why I'm turning to FEM.

So what is the general point of FEM?

I realize I'm asking a general question here, but I really need to know more about how FEM can help me before I can proceed to ask more specific questions

Here's what I'm begining to understand so far:
FEM is used to build models with characteristics like "elasticity", "stress", etc., so that you can simulate how the model will react to forces in the real world.

I think I'll stop here.  If I given insufficient information for you to help me let me know.  Any help would be appreciated.

Jim
Replies continue below

RE: What is the General point of FEM?

(OP)
Ok I've found a pretty good website that explains the general applications of FEM.  I got it from another older post in this Forum.  I'm going to post it here again, incase someone else is looking for this answer.
http://www.dermotmonaghan.com/

I've only been here about an hour and already I'm liking this Forum alot.

Thanks
Jim

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