Softpedia Editor's Review for 4nec2
An application that can be used by antenna modelers.
Written by Mihaela Citea on April 23rd, 2013
Especially designed for antenna modelers, 4nec2 is a simple tool for designing, optimizing and verifying 2D or 3D geometry structures.
4nec2 is easy to use and comes with a basic 3D editor to help novices create antenna models, compare field patterns, generate SWR charts and learn in the process. However, it also features options designed to meet the requirements of more advanced users, such as the genetic algorithm based optimizers.
The interface looks rather crowded, but it provides fast access to all the options. It displays detailed information about the antenna parameters, such as the voltage, frequency, wavelength, impedance, the number of series and parallel components, input power, structure and network loss and the calculated efficiency.
The geometry editor provides real-time rendering of the model, displaying a 3D graphical representation of the model and enabling you to rotate it freely, zoom in and out, determine segment lengths or view the wire load.
Auto-segmentation, frequency sweeps. step-radius conversion, adjustable input power, memory usage options, customizable unit types are other features that this application comes with. Additionally, it can calculate area-plot and point plot data and display it on the screen.
The built-in geometry builder enables you to set the configuration parameters (radius, angles, rotation, length etc.) in order to generate patches, boxes, cylinders, parabolas, helices or spheres. The application can evaluate the model and optimize the antenna and other variables, such as the resonance, efficiency, SWR or the F/B and F/R-ratios.
4nec2 is capable of running up to 11000 wires and/or segments and features a powerful real-time 3D geometry and pattern viewer. It is suitable for both experienced and beginner antenna modelers, providing all the necessary tools for designing fully-functional designs.
Here are some key features of "4nec2":
· Graphical 2D and 3D visualization of Far- and Near-field data and Geometry strutures (including circular polarization view).
· Line-chart visualization for freq-sweep Gain, F/B, F/R, SWR and impedance data.
· Drag and drop style Geometry Editor to assist the starting antenne modeller.
· Full Nec2 and Nec4 command support, including GX, GM, GR, GA, GH and surface patches.
· Capable of running up to 11000 wires and/or segments (limited by the max of 2Gb of windows on-board memory)
· Support for inclusion of surface-wave component in far-field data.
· 3D geometry display for surface patches included.
· Variable substitution included for complete Nec2/4 command set enabling you to model by equation.
· Sophisticated real-time 3D geometry and pattern viewer showing real wire-radius.
· AO-style gradient/hill-climbing optimizer included.
· Genetic Algorithms based optimizer included.
· Automatic variable sweeper with line-chart output.
· Automatic convergence tester with line-chart output.
· Interactive Smith chart visualization for freq-sweeps.
· Integrated Sommerfeld ground calculations with frequency-sweep.
· Automatic generation of VOACAP propagation prediction type 13 and –14 antenna files.
· Automatic coversion of AO (*.ant)and EZnec (*.ez)input files.
· Insulated-Wire’ and 'LC-trap' loading-types included.
· Automatic conversion for feet, inch, #awg to meters and elevation/azimuth to phi/theta and reverse.
· Batch processing for automatic testing, calculation and/or conversion of multiple Nec, AO and/or EZnec input-files.
· Extensive segment- en geometry validation, such as: Intersecting volumes, Short/thick wires at sharp angle, Unequal segmentation for parallel wires, Too low hight, Large radius or length changes at junctions, etc.
· Screen grabber for easy cut/paste, print or save parts of the screen, window or form.
· Geometry builder to create cylindric, patch, plane, box, helix and parabola shaped structures using auto-segmentation and/or equal-area rules.
· Automatic generation of Stub-, L-, Pi- and Tee-matching-networks (low- and high-pass)
· Visualization of circular polarization components E(left) and E(right) for far-field.
· EZnec style MiniNec ground included.
· Capable of running the default Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories Nec4 engine.
· Running on all systems from early Windows-95 to latest Windows-Vista
· More than 450 example files
· Context sensitive Help-file.
What's New in This Release: [ read full changelog ]
· Some 300 extra categorized example files added.
· Under certain conditions, in Geometry Edit all wires were saved as single-segment wires. This bug was fixed.
· Bugfix because both Ri and Xi values were extracted from the same Nec Ri data-value when optimizing/sweeping a model containing split voltage/current sources.
· Bugfix when using variable names longer than 8 chars in Genetic Optimizer.
· Some other minor bugfixes.