I’m Nancy, a support engineer at Lumerical, and I’ll be presenting this introductory
course on the 2.5D variational FDTD solver, also known as varFDTD, in MODE Solutions.
The varFDTD solver uses a variation on the traditional finite difference time domain
technique, making it much faster for simulating large planar integrated optics components
compared to 3D FDTD.
Types of devices that can be simulated include ridge waveguide based devices like this ring
resonator, or this star coupler used for multiplexing and demultiplexing with arrayed waveguide
gratings, as well as light guiding in a photonic crystal waveguide.
Since the varFDTD solver uses a time-domain simulation, we can get the broadband response
from a single simulation.
For planar geometries where there is negligible coupling between different slab modes, varFDTD
can provide comparable results to 3D FDTD using only the simulation time and memory
of a 2D FDTD simulation, making it ideal for prototyping large integrated optical components.
Since the varFDTD solver algorithm and many of the settings of the solver are shared with
FDTD, the FDTD 100 course is a recommended pre-requisite to this course.
Everyone who passes the course will receive a varFDTD 100 certificate.
If you’re interested in learning more about the varFDTD solver, I would recommend taking