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Latest Enhancements in XF7

Current Version: Release 7.3.2

This release of XF7 features enhancements for the magnetic resonance (MR) community, plus a few improvements in usability and performance that are beneficial to all users.


New Features in XF7:

Birdcage Tool:
This new tool provides the ability to quickly build an MR birdcage coil and prepare it for simulation. The user interface is laid out as a series of tabs that guides users through the process of creating the coil. Moving through each tab, users can specify geometric details, set the resonant frequency, create and/or assign a waveform, create and/or assign capacitors, and choose the number of sources to excite the structure. Upon completion, the Birdcage Tool will create the specified geometry and also create and attach all necessary circuit components, create and/or assign the waveform and set source phases and time delays. Birdcage designs included are High Pass, Band Pass, Low Pass, and Source-Driven Homogeneous.




MR-related Output Types of MR Transmit Efficiency and Approximate MR Image:
New features for medical imaging simulations include MR Transmit Efficiency and Approximate MR Images. MR Transmit Efficiency is proportional to the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) for an MR birdcage, a single loop, or a specific set of amplitudes and phases for an MR phased array. The Approximate MR Image is a representation of the actual image generated by the coil, based on the rotating B-field output (B1+) and the water ratio data of the biological tissues in the simulation.





XFdtd Assistant:
The Assistant is a step-by-step guide for new users that significantly reduces the learning curve and enables users to get the software up and running right out of the box. Each tab on the Assistant leads the user through the project creation process with descriptive text that explains each step and links to menus appropriate for that task. As each step is completed, the Assistant adds a check mark on the tab. Experienced users may simply turn the Assistant off, if desired.

Usability Enhancements:
We’ve reduced the XStream memory footprint required for steady-state calculations and improved face and edge selection tools for geometry editing.



Other Recent Enhancements:

MPI + GPU and Unlimited Memory Support
By combining Message Passing Interface (MPI) technology with XStream GPU Acceleration, multiple high-performance graphical processing units (GPUs) in separate computers can be linked together, resulting in tremendous increases in processing speed and available memory. Complementing this technology with unlimited memory support gives XF7 the robustness to simulate massive problems exceeding billions of cells.

External Queue Integration (EQI)
Many XFdtd users work in computational environments that include one or more high-performance computing (HPC) systems. In this environment, a desktop workstation is used to prepare a Project, create simulations and view results, but the simulations are performed on an HPC system. Such a system typically has an existing job control system installed on it such as the Portable Batch Sytem (PBS), Sun Grid Engine (SGE) or Simple Linux Utility for Resource Management (SLURM). Starting with version 7.3.1, XFdtd includes External Queue Integration (EQI) to allow users to queue simulations directly with such systems instead of manually submitting them for execution or queuing them locally.

STL and DXF Export of Geometry
In addition to the suite of solid model formats, XF7 can now export STL and DXF files. These file formats are used primarily for rapid prototyping and are compatible with many software packages.

Bend Solid Geometry and Project a Sheet
These two new solid modeling operations facilitate the creation of conformal geometry. The bend operation wraps geometry around a cylindrical path and the project a sheet operation embeds faces in another object.

Crop ODB++
ODB++ designs are now previewed during import.  In some scenarios only a portion of the PCB is required for the 3D simulation. During preview of the PCB the user can select to import only the area of interest.

Simulation Creation Optimization
For parameter sweeps where the changes in parameter values do not require re-meshing, simulation creation is now many times faster.