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Finite Difference, Y U NO WORK?!

Posted by Akano , in Math/Physics Dec 09 2012 · 211 views

E&M FORTRAN Programming
So, I'm working on a computer project for my Electrodynamics course. I'm using a computer method called the Relaxation or Finite Difference Method. It basically takes a physical scenario, divides the space of interest into a grid, and assigns voltages for each grid intersection. Then, using a computer language of choice (I'm using FORTRAN, like a boss), I make a program that essentially takes a weighted average of all the points whose voltages aren't fixed until the program doesn't change those voltages anymore. This gives a surprisingly good approximation for a physical system.

I'm basically modeling a system with two conducting cylindrical shells of equal radius separated by some height and which are at voltages +V0 and -V0. The problem is that my output graphs do not look physical; the voltage just drops to near zero rapidly for points outside and between the cylinders, whereas I expect that the graph should gradually drop.

Curse you, technology!

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Akano Toa of Electricity
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Name: Akano
Real Name: Forever Shrouded in Mystery :P
Age: 27
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Likes: Science, Math, LEGO, Bionicle, Ponies, Comics, Yellow, Voice Acting
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Twitter: @akanotoe

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