Finite difference and finite volume time domain techniques in electromagnetics: A comparative study


  • M. A. Jensen,

  • Y. Rahmat-Samii


The finite difference and finite volume time domain (FDTD and FVTD) methods are powerful computational simulation techniques in electromagnetics. Although the two algorithms are derived using finite difference discretizations of Maxwell's equations, they differ in their theoretical foundations, practical implementations, and domains of applicability. This paper provides a comparison of these two techniques based upon their theoretical development, simulation accuracy, and computational requirements. Concrete simulation examples are provided to illustrate their respective domains of applicability. A hybrid FVTD/FDTD algorithm is also presented which combines the capabilities of both techniques to allow efficient modeling of a wide variety of geometrical features.