Home > FAQ > General FAQ
1. What PC configuration works best with the software?
PedaSoft recommends a powerful PC to install EM-Supreme or EM-Core for best visualization and speed, the below is just minimum requirements but customer is advised to use newer processors and video cards with large memory (512k or above).
Microsoft Windows-based OS (32 or 64 bits): XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7.0, Windows 2000, Windows Server 2003-2008.
Intel- or AMD-based processor
Minimum of 512 MB RAM
Minimum of 256 MB Video Card
2. What if I have an older PC or/and video card?
It will still work, but for customers with low-memory video card might experience some minor distortions in of 2D or 3D views of simulated structure or results. You can always click on the "Model” button to go back to the original undistorted shape at any time.
3. I have a Windows Vista and EM-Core or EM-Supreme was closed immediately after trying to save a project. What should I do?
For windows Vista users, you will need to disable User Account Controls “i.e. remove the windows Vista feature prompting users before each action, which will allow EM-Core or EM-Supreme to save project files.”
· To do so, simply go to your Control Panel, and type in “uac” in the search field.
· Click on “Turn User Account Control (UAC) on or off”
· Uncheck the “Use User Account Control” and press OK:
You might be asked to restart your computer to apply the changes.
4. What platforms can EM-Core and EM-Supreme be installed on?
Windows XP, VISTA, Windows 7.0 etc for 32bit as well as 64 bits
5. What technologies are supported by EM-supreme?
Technology supported includes “but not limited to”: PHEMTS, SiGe, GaAs/AlGaAs/InGaP HBT, CMOS, GaAs/ AlGaAs/ InGaP PIN diodes, and GaAs FETs. Furthermore, EM-Supreme® can also be customized to fit your specific project needs.
6. Do you do modeling services?
Yes we do. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more info.
7. What technique EM-Supreme/EM-core use for EM modeling?
The powerful FDTD (Finite Difference Time Domain Technique), with fast Fourier Transforms to convert your time-domain signals to frequency domain.
8. Do PedaSoft’s tools support multithreading?
YES (an optional item that can be purchased separately). If you have one of the new processors with more than one core, our tools are designed to take advantage of that for faster simulations.
9. Is EM-Supreme capable of simulating large-Signal parameters ("i.e. gain, harmonics, 1 dB-compression point, etc).
YES. It is.
10. How accurate is EM-Supreme /EM-Core?
Very accurate. A few examples at our website show very accurate results compared to measurements for real-world problems. Please go to the benchmark page in our website to learn more about the below benchmarks (http://www.pedasoft.com/benchmark.html):
*Bench-mark # 1: (MA/COM design) small and large-signal simulation of mm-wave PIN switch mounted on a CPW
*Bench-mark #2: 4-port branch coupler
11. After inserting a component, I see the metal has turned to a blue color and I was not able to get out of the component mode insertion mode. What should I do?
Always hit “ESC” key to get out of component or port insertion mode
12. Do you have a recommendation on number of grid points I should use for substrate thickness?
Using a substrate thickness about 3 “three” or more grid points is recommended for accurate results. You can always change your grid-size “i.e. Dy” to achieve that.
13. How big of an air box should I use for optimum results?
Using an air-space above the substrate to caption radiation along with terminating your domain should be at least 4 times the substrate’s thickness. For example, for a substrate thickness of 3*Dy, you need a total height of your box "dimension perpendicular to substrate" to be equal to at least 15*Dy. Please refer to the antenna example in this manual for implementation details.
14.a. How much space do I need to leave around the metal structure?
As a rule of thumb, users need to leave at least 10 grid points between the edge of the metal to the closest air box edge/wall for optimum results. However, for radiating structures “i.e. antennas”, users are advised to leave at least 15-20 grids from the edge of your metal to the closest wall/air-box edge.
14.b. How long is the line connecting my port to simulated structure should be?
For accurate model for your design, the transmission line length connecting your port to the structure depends on the type of the simulated structure, e.g. for antennas and spiral inductors, it’s recommended to leave at least 30 cells from your port to the edge of your structure. You can then use the embedding feature under Option-Settings to get your S-parameters at your port. Please refer to the antenna and spiral inductor examples provided in this user guide and also in the examples directory in EM-Core and EM-Supreme program directory.
15.a. How can I control/choose my grid size Dx, Dy, and Dz?
Dx,Dy, and Dz values’ depend on the simulated structure and they can be changed manually by the user, but they have to be set smaller than a certain value that depends on your substrate dielectric constant (epr), your mesh density “chosen between 20 or 10 cell per wavelength”, and the maximum frequency the structure is simulated for. Tip: please note the “Max” value on top of boxes to set Dx, Dy, and Dz on the left hand side of the EM-Core/EM-Supreme main program window. This "Max" is a cap on Dx, Dy, and Dz that cannot be exceeded and is a function of relative permittivity epr, your mesh density, and the maximum frequency your structure is simulated for. All of which can be changed using the “Settings Window” under “Options” in the main tool bar. (Tip: faster simulations Dx, Dy, and Dz may be set as close as possible to MAX, which can be achieved by changing the frequency range in the Options-Settings window).
15.b. I see some designs in your directory example that has a range frequency range under Optionsà Settings is set from 0 to 50 GHz, however, I only need to simulate from 0 to 5 GHz?
The maximum frequency controls how fast are your simulations, PedaSoft recommends setting it to the highest possible frequency that achieves a max cap “i.e. MAX” to be as close as possible to Dx, Dy, and Dz. In one of the design examples, the 50 GHz was set as the maximum frequency to make “MAX” about 83.526 Microns, which is the closest to Dy “was about 83.333 Microns”. You can then control your results range from 0 to 5 GHz in the results windows to only look at the frequencies you are interested in.
16. What can EM-Core be used for "i.e. typical problems"
EM-Core is a fast 3D Electromagnetic field solver software for planar-circuit and antenna Simulation. EM-Core® is capable of modeling both small-signal “i.e. S-parameters and impedances” as well as radiation patterns and fields for planar components such as filters, antennas, couplers, RFIC & MMIC circuits, high density interconnects, transmission lines, microwave circuit discontinuities and more! EM-Core® includes EM to study and model EM-distributed effects, coupling, radiation, as well as parasitic effects at RF and mm-Wave frequencies on passive structures and systems.
17. What differentiates EM-Core from others?
It is built and designed for planar circuits and it uses a powerful FDTD “i.e. simulation is done in time-domain“. It also supports multithreading for faster simulations. Being a time-domain simulator, this allows you to estimate your S-parameters as well as radiation patterns and efficiencies for a wide range of frequencies in just one run.
18. What can EM-Supreme be used for "i.e. typical problems"?
EM-Supreme is a hybrid field/device/circuit co-simulator. EM-SUPREME® is capable of modeling both small-signal “i.e. S-parameters” as well as large-signal parameters such as IP3, harmonics, gain, and 1dB compression point for RF & mm-Wave components like power amplifiers (PA’s), switches, phase attenuators, active antennas as well as complete systems such as front-end modules accurately by exploiting EM, device physics, and circuit across the entire simulated domain. EM-Supreme® is a result of more than a decade of R&D. EM-Supreme® is based on merging a 3D electromagnetic field solver with a device solver. The software includes EM to study and model EM-distributed effects, coupling, radiation, as well as parasitic effects at RF and mm-wave frequencies on active, passive, and complete RF modules.
19. What differentiates EM-Supreme from what is in the market today?
EM-Supreme differentiates itself from other microwave available EDA products by combining field, device, and circuit simulators in one tool. EM-Supreme® merges 3D EM planar-circuit simulator with active device models generated internally using any of the following:
1. Physics-based models*
2. Circuit models*
3. Measurements **
4. Foundry models**
* Computed internally by EM-Supreme®
** supplied by user or manufacturer
20. Can I simulate radiation patterns and efficiencies?
Yes, all is possible using EM-Core or EM-Supreme. Radiation patterns in 2D plots, polar plots, and 3D spherical plots can all be simulated. Also, radiation efficiencies can be simulated for a wide-band of frequencies in just one simulation “i.e. one run” since it uses the powerful FDTD technique.
21. How long does it take to simulate a structure?
It depends on how big the structure, the frequency the structure is simulated for, your workstation/PC configuration, and whether or not you are using our multithreading option. For instance, a microstrip patch antenna can be simulated in a matter of few seconds (10 to 100 seconds), which depends on all the above factors. An active component, on the other hand, can take more (a few minutes to an hour). Every problem is different but essentially EM-Core and EM-Supreme are very fast simulators.
22. What should I do if I had to make some changes to my design after clicking on the simulation icon and the simulation starts to run?
Simply click on the red-circle icon on the main tool-bar to stop the simulation. Then make any necessary changes to your design and then re-click on the simulation icon.
23. What licensing technique is used and how can I use the license file?
EM-Supreme and EM-Core use FlexLM and you need a license file (i.e. *.lic) from PedaSoft to start evaluating the product. After installing the tool, you need to place the license file you receive from us (yourcompanyname.lic) into the following directory:
for 32-bit OS>> C:\program files\common files\pedasoft\licenses\
or for 64-bit OS >> C:\program files(x86)\common files\pedasoft\licenses\
24. How long will it take me to learn how to use EM-Supreme/EM-Core?
The EDA tool is very simple to use. It will take RF engineers a few minutes to go over the features and be comfortable using the tool, and about an hour to start running his/her first simulation. Also, if you call your technical support engineer, he/she can walk you through the features and get you up and running in a matter of minutes.
25. When I entered a value of Dx as 0.48, EM-Core converts it to 0.47999999. What should I do?
If you need to enter exactly 0.48 as the Dx value, you will need to press the "space bar" key a couple of times after setting its value and then move on to the next parameter. This will keep the value of Dx as 0.48 with no approximations. However, it’s recommended to leave the approximated number, since EM-Supreme and EM-Core have internal engines that intelligently round ups errors.
26. How can I see actual dimensions as real numbers instead of size in grids (n*Dx or n*Dz) in “Chip Designer” mode?
Simply click on the Ruler Icon to switch between real numbers and actual grid size "e.g. nDy or nDz". Also, at the bottom bar you can always see the co-ordinates of any grid point as real numbers and in grid increments (both at the same time).
27. My 3D model sometime changes in color or becomes a little bit distorted after viewing radiation patterns or viewing some other windows?
This happens very rarely and is quite normal for specific types of video card (especially for users with low memory video cards). In the rare case of this happening, simply click on the model tab on the left hand side "i.e. the one above the simulation tab" to retain your original view.
28.a. Can I save the project and open it later to and continue working on it?
Yes, definitely, when saving your project, all project details will be saved including all results from your previous run. So, when you re-open a saved project, you can view results and radiation patterns without even running the simulation again. Please be advised that if you run the simulation for an already saved project and then re-save the project, all data/results and design updates will replace your old design/data. Therefore, to retain older designs and results, we recommend saving the project under a different name using "Save As" so that you can have the original data with results saved at all time.
28.b. When I opened a saved project and re-edit it, I was not able to get reasonable simulation results. Did I make something wrong?
If you intend to make changes to your initial design’s 3D model, whether for a saved or current project, such as changing Dx, Dy, or Dz, you need first to delete your old ports and after making your changes, re-insert new ports. You always need new ports if you make any changes to your 3D domain model.
29. What types of data formats does EM-Core and EM-supreme generate/use?
TouchStone formats "i.e. *.s2p" and "*.S2d" so you can import/export your design’s results with other commercially available software such as Agilent's ADS and AWR's Microwave Office.
30. Can I export/import a design to/from EM-Core/EM-Supreme?
Yes, the tool fully supports DXF file import/export.
31. Can I print my results?
Yes, you can use the print option located in virtually all results windows to print results. Also, you can use any available freeware software to capture any EM-Core or EM-Supereme graphical/results windows, or simply use the Windows "Print Screen" option in your keyboard to include your results as an image in your report.
32. What types of losses can be simulated using EM-Core or EM-Supreme?
Both dielectric loss and conductor loss can be simulated, as well as skin-depth effects. Those parameters can be set in the Settings window under Options. The loss parameters can be obtained from the table of dielectric constants/conductivities provided by PedaSoft in this manual or as a separate document, or you can simply use the parameters supplied by manufacturer.
33. I noticed that when I opened a saved project and made some changes, and ran simulation for the new design, it gave me the same results as for the old design. What should I do?
This happens if you make changes without going into the "Chip Designer" mode. To be sure that your new updates in the design have been saved, please go to the "Chip Designer" mode at least once and this will save your new design and updates automatically.
34. What is the difference between EM-Core and EM-Supreme?
EM-Core and EM-supreme are electromagnetic “EM” simulators and both use time-domain “i.e. FDTD”. The difference mainly is that EM-core is a subset of EM-Supreme in a way that EM-core is for small-signal and antenna simulations of passive structures, while EM-supreme can, in addition to what EM-Core does, simulate large-signal parameters (i.e. gain, harmonics, 1 dB compression point and more) for active components as well as complete RF and mm-wave modules and systems.
35. How can I receive technical support?
During your evaluation period and also for customers under maintenance agreement, you are encouraged to contact our technical support team, which can be reached at email@example.com or through our US office's main phone-line below and choosing the option support to be connected to our technical team.
Technical Support Contacts:
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org (preferred method of contact)
36. What is the procedure to download and install EM-Supreme/EM-Core?
· You will first need to send us your Hard Disk Serial Number (8 Hexadecimal Numbers). You can retrieve it by typing “dir” in your Command Prompt (located in your PC’s Accessories).
· Simply go to www.pedasoft.com and fill out the download form info. including your Hard Disk Serial Number. You will then receive an email containing a link that will take you directly to start downloading EM-Core or EM-Supreme.
· After installing the software, you need to place the license files you receive from us (yourcompanyname.lic) into the following directory:
For 32-bit OS>> C:\program files\common files\pedasoft\licenses\
Or for 64-bit OS >> C:\program files(x86)\common files\pedasoft\licenses\
Please contact us if you have any difficulties installing the software.