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March-on-in-Time: Boundary Element Time-Domain Domain Decomposition Methods

Project description

Advanced mathematical methods support modelling of complex terahertz systems

As systems and technologies become increasingly complex, the models that are vital to their design and development must balance the need to capture this complexity at an acceptable computational cost. The terahertz (THz) frequency range of the electromagnetic spectrum, perhaps the last frontier, takes engineers into new realms of highly non-linear and strongly radiating behaviours. Modelling these efficiently and accurately requires application of so-called time-domain boundary element methods (TD-BEMs), which are currently not as mature as other approaches. The EU-funded BET3D project is accelerating the development of TD-BEMs to support a new generation of THz technologies with applications in key fields including medicine, security and energy.


Modelling almost entirely replaced prototyping as a design methodology. In electromagnetics and optics, it has played a central role in the rapid development of communication and imaging, with applications in medicine, security, and energy. New technological requirements have always been met by breakthroughs in modelling.

Advances in THz technology have driven researchers to consider systems that are highly non-linear and strongly radiating. Modelling these systems requires methods that are based on time-stepping, and that can accurately describe unbounded regions. These requirements can only be met by time-domain boundary element methods (TD-BEMs). The use of other methods such as the finite element method, the method of moments, or the finite difference time-domain method – if at all applicable – results in unacceptable computational costs, and large errors in dispersion and radiation characteristics.

Unfortunately, TD-BEMs are not nearly as mature as other methods. They lack the ability to model all but the simplest systems. Attempts to use TD-BEMs to model realistic devices containing multiple materials, ports, coatings, or two-dimensional materials like graphene lead to instabilities, rendering the result of simulations completely useless. This state of affairs has persisted for over 50 years but has become an urgent problem now.

BET3D will aggressively accelerate the development of the time-domain boundary element method into a method that can model highly non-linear, strongly radiating systems and that unlocks the capability to model emerging technologies in THz communications and imaging, and beyond.

As part of the benchmarking and validation for this project, we will model the generation of THz radiation by an array of graphene resonant tunnelling diode oscillators, including feeds, ports, packaging, and antenna structure. Results of BET3D will enable modelling of non-linear, radiating systems, also in acoustics, elastodynamics, and fluid dynamics.

Host institution

Net EU contribution
€ 1 999 900,00
9000 Gent

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Vlaams Gewest Prov. Oost-Vlaanderen Arr. Gent
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
€ 1 999 900,00

Beneficiaries (1)