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February 19, 2021

The Two Best Features in Ansys HFSS 2021

Ansys HFSS 2021 R1 allows you to experience electromagnetism like never before. It is now available for download on the Ansys Customer Portal. It is the version that Principal Product Manager Matt Commens describes as “the best HFSS release since the software’s inception in the 1990s.”

The big highlights of the release include:

  • New HFSS Mesh Fusion technology, which enables simulation of large, never possible before electromagnetic systems with the best efficiency, accuracy, and scalability.
  • Support for Encrypted 3D components in HFSS 3D Layout for printed circuit boards (PCBs,) integrated chip (IC) packages and IC designs enabling suppliers to share detailed 3D component designs for highly accurate simulations.

1. The Best Thing in HFSS since HFSS: Mesh Fusion

The 2021 R1 HFSS release introduces HFSS Mesh Fusion technology. It provides best-in-class parallel meshing technology, enabling fast simulation of large electromagnetic systems. Think of large, in fact very large, complex systems such as a 5G millimeter wave array antenna, IC-package-PCB-connector combination, TV in an electromagnetic interference (EMI) chamber, antenna on an aircraft and everything else that warrants a large-scale electromagnetic simulation.


HFSS Mesh Fusion targets two critical customer challenges: Electromagnetic system simulation and accuracy without compromise.

Generating the mesh of a complex system, such as an IC in its packaging or an antenna on its platform, can be a difficult challenge — especially when the geometry detail scales across orders of magnitude. A long-standing pain point in electromagnetic simulation has been performing fully coupled electromagnetic simulation of large and complex designs.

In the past, one alternative to simulating full, complex designs has been to simulate individual components and then stitch the results together. This method has proved to be error-prone and less accurate. Too much relevant information on how the system will behave in practice is lost in such divide-and-conquer approaches. This leads to conversative design rules and compromises in design performance.

Customers today want robust simulation capabilities to simulate the largest and most complex EM systems. They need new meshing methods that allow meshing to be applied locally and in parallel. This will allow them to solve at very large scales and the resulting simulations will capture all the relevant electromagnetic effects.

HFSS Mesh Fusion: a Solution Without Barriers 

Today’s products demand a breakthrough meshing technology to spur faster innovation and HFSS Mesh Fusion provides exactly that.

With Mesh Fusion, you can mesh your complete system together in a single, fully coupled electromagnetic matrix. There is no need to simulate individual components separately. It helps you combine multiple components of a system such as IC on package or antenna on platform. Gone are the days when you had to neglect the coupling between these components and stitch the results together. There is really no limit on the complexity of a design you can include in your electromagnetic system analysis with HFSS Mesh Fusion.

See HFSS Mesh Fusion in action:

2. Encrypted 3D Components Provide Privacy, Accuracy and Ease of Use

The second big thing in the 2021 R1 release of HFSS is the ability to simulate with encrypted HFSS 3D components in HFSS 3D Layout. This feature provides the capability to use ready-made 3D component models that represent discrete parts or components of a simulation such, as an antenna, an RF connector or a surface-mount device like a chip capacitor. These components can come from internally generated designs, a model created for re-use or through collaboration with third parties, such as vendors or customers.

Encrypted 3D components help allay intellectual property (IP) protection worries. When companies share their component designs with their customers, protecting IP is of utmost importance. Safe and confident sharing of a company’s component design is vital to its business.

The ability to simulate encrypted HFSS 3D components means that you no longer need to compromise on accuracy. Designers are no longer forced to use circuit-level components (e.g., S-parameter models) vs. true 3D models into their design, impacting the overall simulation accuracy.

Designs where 3D components are not used during product development may have to compromise on device performance with more conservative design rules. Users have less confidence in implementing the component that does not include real coupling effects of their integrated design.

Customers today need to use 3D components in systems based around PCBs, IC packages and ICs. Hence, there must be an optimized workflow for layered designs enabling companies to supply components to customers or re-use as needed. Internal details of a vendor component must be kept confidential, but at the same time be simulation-ready for use in a customer’s full system design. There must be an easy way to create encrypted 3D components and collaborate with your vendors and customers. HFSS 2021 R1 enables the 3D component workflow you need.

Encrypted 3D Components in HFSS 3D Layout Redefines the Workflow

The ability to encrypt and re-use 3D components with HFSS 3D layout allows companies to share their detailed component designs (connector, antenna, SMD chip capacitor) without divulging IP such as geometry and material properties.

Quick 3D Component placement on a design. Click to enlarge.

It enables prospective customers of vendors to use encrypted 3D Components in a full system design. The end user receives more confidence in the validity of results by rigorously considering coupling effects of the integration while also protecting the vendor’s design IP. In addition, it also provides full, uncompromised simulation fidelity for encrypted 3D components with HFSS and adaptive meshing delivering its gold-standard accuracy.

HFSS Mesh Fusion technology and the support for encrypted 3D components in HFSS 3D Layout aim to redefine the way products are created today. Make sure you are on the latest version of the HFSS software — 2021 R1 — to take advantage of both these features for your designs.

You can learn about all the new exciting features in the recorded webinar: Ansys HFSS 2021 R1: Redefining What’s Possible with Mesh Fusion.

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