Antenna Modeling

EZNEC

EZNEC

I am new to modeling so please don’t consider any of the comments below authoritative in any manner. However I am going to share what I am using and what I have learned as a “newbie” over the past few weeks and let you go from there.

After playing with a half dozen modeling programs I settled on EZNEC. There is a demo version available that works well but is limited to designs that require less than 20 segments.  This works fine for basic dipoles but if you need more than that you will need to pony up and purchase the program. The entry level (EZNEC v.5) will give you 500 segments which is enough for some pretty complex systems. A few bucks more for (EZNEC+ v.5) and you have 1500 segments to play with. More info can be found here

AutoEZ

AutoEZ Elevation Plot

I have been an amateur for 30 years and now that modeling programs have finally become economical I am able to play with some of the theories I have had for many years.

The program(s) are not as intuitive as I would like so there is a little bit of a learning curve, or at least for this old dog.   I struggled for a couple weeks and stalled out when it came to the transmission line and finally ran across a couple things that really helped get me rolling:

  • Antenna modeling for beginners. This is a fantastic book written by Ward Silver N0AX link
  • If you are looking for something online (and in addition to the above) I highly recommend you check out this link. This is a fantastic series written by Mark A Uphill MW0MAU that takes you step by step through several scenarios.
AutoEZ insert objects

AutoEZ insert objects

And finally the crowning jewel for me was AutoEZ which is an add-on for EZNEC that not only makes EZNEC easier to operate but adds substantial functionality. Things as simple as adding standard transmission lines via a drop down menu  to more complex tasks like running a multitude of antenna scenarios. This might including changing antenna height, antenna apex angle, lengths, etc and see how the antenna responds. What happens in 30 seconds using AutoEZ would take you hours otherwise.

I have just touched on a few of the benefits of this program as there are too many to list and to be quite honest I am still finding my way.

More details can be found here  and while you are at it download a free copy of TLDetails which is a resource that every ham needs in their shack.