- The student can explain the basics of finite element techniques and can apply these to solve the common partial differential equations of physics.
- The student can distinguish between elliptic, hyperbolic and parabolic partial differential equations, and formulate initial and boundary conditions.
- The student can translate a physics problem, and set-up a Finite Element calculation in a package like COMSOL for a multi-domain (e.g. electro-mechanical or microfluidic) problem and validate the result of the calculation.
- The student is able to report and reflect on the results obtained from finite element simulations. This includes a detailed description that helps others to reproduce the work, and a discussion about the validity of the model in light of the physical reality the model represents.
In this course, students learn about finite element modelling (FEM), as a way to solve complex physics problems. The theoretical background is offered in a select set of lectures (tutor P.J. de Boeij), finalized by a written exam. Simultaneously, students learn how to use a modern FEM program such as Comsol Multiphysics. In a set of smaller assignments, students learn how to use the program, and how to define a (multi)physics problem. In the second part of the course, students have to work on solving a larger, and more complex multiphysics problem.|
The course is organized along two application domains, following specific tracks in the NT program:
- Microfluidics: Mass transport, Poisson Nernst Planck, and/or DEP.
- MEMS: including (but not limited to) Comb drive.
It is important that students have a solid background in the relevant physics domain, as for example provided in the courses advanced MEMS design, or (one of the courses offered in) Lab on Chip and/or Nanofluidics.
There are no obligatory books that have to be bought. All required material (notes, readers) will be offered via the digital learning environment (Canvas).