Assistant Professor Su Yan Receives 2020 IEEE APS Best Paper Award

Electrical Engineering Assistant Professor Su Yan recently received the prestigious IEEE Antennas and Propagation Edward E. Altschuler AP-S Magazine Prize Paper Award for his paper titled “Multiphysics Modeling in Electromagnetics: Technical Challenges and Potential Solutions”. The IEEE Antennas and Propagation Edward E. Altschuler AP-S Magazine Prize Paper Award was established in 2010 to recognize the best contribution published in the IEEE Antennas and Propagation Magazine during the previous year. The paper is co-authored by Jian-Ming Jin, Ph.D.

Dr. Yan and his research team work on the development of novel methods to model and simulate various electromagnetic devices and systems, such as radar systems, antennas and arrays, integrated circuits, and lasers, to evaluate, predict, and optimize their performance. Dr. Yan also works on developing methods to simulate systems that involve multiple physical processes, known as multiphysics simulations. Examples of multiphysics simulations include the electromagnetic-thermal modeling of microwave integrated circuits (ICs) that are widely used in cell phones, GPS devices, medical devices, and automobile collision-avoidance systems; and electromagnetic-plasma simulation of high-power microwave generators such as gyrotrons used in nuclear fusion research experiments, radar systems for national defense mechanisms, and active denial systems for anti-terrorism efforts.

As these electromagnetic devices decrease in size or generate higher power, the interactions that occur between different physical phenomena, also known as multiphysics interactions, become increasingly important. These interactions can generate excessive heat, which may lead to performance deterioration, malfunction, or even damage to the devices. Dr. Yan seeks to address the issues caused by multiphysics interactions by developing methods that can model and simulate each individual physical phenomenon to better control these interactions and enhance overall device performance.

In his award-winning paper, Dr. Yan summarizes recent developments in multiphysics simulations by discussing several applications, including that for cancer treatment, microwave power amplifiers, and air breakdown/discharge in high-power microwave experiments. He also addresses some of the technical challenges typically encountered in multiphysics modeling and their potential solutions, such as the accuracy and efficiency of the numerical method used or exploring different methods to account for multiphysics interactions. Dr. Yan’s research findings serve as a roadmap and guidance to any researcher and engineer looking to perform any of the various multiphysics simulations discussed in his paper for the future generation of electromagnetic devices and systems.

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