[ascl:1106.016]
Nightfall: Animated Views of Eclipsing Binary Stars

Nightfall is an astronomy application for fun, education, and science. It can produce animated views of eclipsing binary stars, calculate synthetic lightcurves and radial velocity curves, and eventually determine the best-fit model for a given set of observational data of an eclipsing binary star system.

Nightfall comes with a user guide and a set of observational data for several eclipsing binary star systems.

[ascl:1106.017]
CAOS: Code for Adaptive Optics Systems

The CAOS "system" (where CAOS stands for Code for Adaptive Optics Systems) is properly said a Problem Solving Environment (PSE). It is essentially composed of a graphical programming interface (the CAOS Application Builder) which can load different packages (set of modules). Current publicly distributed packages are the Software Package CAOS (the original adaptive optics package), the Software Package AIRY (an image-reconstruction-oriented package - AIRY stands for Astronomical Image Restoration with interferometrY), the Software Package PAOLAC (a simple CAOS interface for the analytic IDL code PAOLA developed by Laurent Jolissaint - PAOLAC stands for PAOLA within Caos), and a couple of private packages (not publicly distributed but restricted to the corresponding consortia): SPHERE (especially developed for the VLT planet finder SPHERE), and AIRY-LN (a specialized version of AIRY for the LBT instrument LINC-NIRVANA). Another package is also being developed: MAOS (that stands for Multiconjugate Adaptive Optics Simulations), developed for multi-reference multiconjugate AO studies purpose but still in a beta-version form.

[ascl:1106.018]
CMB B-modes from Faraday Rotation

This code is a quick and exact calculator of B-mode angular spectrum due to Faraday rotation by stochastic magnetic fields. Faraday rotation induced B-modes can provide a distinctive signature of primordial magnetic fields because of their characteristic frequency dependence and because they are only weakly damped on small scales, allowing them to dominate B-modes from other sources. By numerically solving the full CMB radiative transport equations, we study the B-mode power spectrum induced by stochastic magnetic fields that have significant power on scales smaller than the thickness of the last scattering surface. Constraints on the magnetic field energy density and inertial scale are derived from WMAP 7-year data, and are stronger than the big bang nucleosynthesis (BBN) bound for a range of parameters. Observations of the CMB polarization at smaller angular scales are crucial to provide tighter constraints or a detection.

[ascl:1106.019]
Application of Compressive Sampling to Radio Astronomy I: Deconvolution

Compressive sampling is a new paradigm for sampling, based on sparseness of signals or signal representations. It is much less restrictive than Nyquist-Shannon sampling theory and thus explains and systematises the widespread experience that methods such as the Högbom CLEAN can violate the Nyquist-Shannon sampling requirements. In this paper, a CS-based deconvolution method for extended sources is introduced. This method can reconstruct both point sources and extended sources (using the isotropic undecimated wavelet transform as a basis function for the reconstruction step). We compare this CS-based deconvolution method with two CLEAN-based deconvolution methods: the Högbom CLEAN and the multiscale CLEAN. This new method shows the best performance in deconvolving extended sources for both uniform and natural weighting of the sampled visibilities. Both visual and numerical results of the comparison are provided.

[ascl:1106.020]
CLASS: Cosmic Linear Anisotropy Solving System

Boltzmann codes are used extensively by several groups for constraining cosmological parameters with Cosmic Microwave Background and Large Scale Structure data. This activity is computationally expensive, since a typical project requires from 10'000 to 100'000 Boltzmann code executions. The code CLASS (Cosmic Linear Anisotropy Solving System) incorporates improved approximation schemes leading to a simultaneous gain in speed and precision. We describe here the three approximations used by CLASS for basic LambdaCDM models, namely: a baryon-photon tight-coupling approximation which can be set to first order, second order or to a compromise between the two; an ultra-relativistic fluid approximation which had not been implemented in public distributions before; and finally a radiation streaming approximation taking reionisation into account.

[ascl:1106.021]
StringFast: Fast Code to Compute CMB Power Spectra induced by Cosmic Strings

StringFast implements a method for efficient computation of the C_l spectra induced by a network of strings, which is fast enough to be used in Markov Chain Monte Carlo analyses of future data. This code allows the user to calculate TT, EE, and BB power spectra (scalar [for TT and EE], vector, and tensor modes) for "wiggly" cosmic strings. StringFast uses the output of the public code CMBACT (ascl:1106.023). The properties of the strings are described by four parameters: Gμ—dimensionless string tension; v—rms transverse velocity (as fraction of c); α—"wiggliness"; ξ—comoving correlation length of the string network. It is written as a Fortran 90 module.

[ascl:1106.022]
MPI-Defrost: Extension of Defrost to MPI-based Cluster Environment

MPI-Defrost extends Frolov’s Defrost to an MPI-based cluster environment. This version has been restricted to a single field. Restoring two-field support should be straightforward, but will require some code changes. Some output options may also not be fully supported under MPI.

This code was produced to support our own work, and has been made available for the benefit of anyone interested in either oscillon simulations or an MPI capable version of Defrost, and it is provided on an "as-is" basis. Andrei Frolov is the primary developer of Defrost and we thank him for placing his work under the GPL (GNU Public License), and thus allowing us to distribute this modified version.

[ascl:1106.023]
CMBACT: CMB from ACTive sources

This code is based on the cosmic string model described in this paper by Pogosian and Vachaspati, as well as on the CMBFAST code created by Uros Seljak and Matias Zaldarriaga. It contains an integrator for the vector contribution to the CMB temperature and polarization. The code is reconfigured to make it easier to use with or without active sources. To produce inflationary CMB spectra one simply sets the string tension to zero (gmu=0.0d0). For a non-zero value of tension only the string contribution is calculated.

An option is added to randomize the directions of velocities of consolidated segments as they evolve in time. In the original segment model, which is still the default version (irandomv=0), each segment is given a random velocity initially, but then continues to move in a straight line for the rest of its life. The new option (irandomv=1) allows to additionally randomize velocities of each segment at roughly each Hubble time. However, the merits of this new option are still under investigation. The default version (irandomv=0) is strongly recommended, since it actually gives reasonable unequal time correlators. For each Fourier mode, k, the string stress-energy components are now evaluated on a time grid sufficiently fine for that k.

[ascl:1106.024]
ELMAG: Simulation of Electromagnetic Cascades

A Monte Carlo program for the simulation of electromagnetic cascades initiated by high-energy photons and electrons interacting with extragalactic background light (EBL) is presented. Pair production and inverse Compton scattering on EBL photons as well as synchrotron losses and deflections of the charged component in extragalactic magnetic fields (EGMF) are included in the simulation. Weighted sampling of the cascade development is applied to reduce the number of secondary particles and to speed up computations. As final result, the simulation procedure provides the energy, the observation angle, and the time delay of secondary cascade particles at the present epoch. Possible applications are the study of TeV blazars and the influence of the EGMF on their spectra or the calculation of the contribution from ultrahigh energy cosmic rays or dark matter to the diffuse extragalactic gamma-ray background. As an illustration, we present results for deflections and time-delays relevant for the derivation of limits on the EGMF.

[ascl:1106.025]
CosmoMC: Cosmological MonteCarlo

We present a fast Markov Chain Monte-Carlo exploration of cosmological parameter space. We perform a joint analysis of results from recent CMB experiments and provide parameter constraints, including sigma_8, from the CMB independent of other data. We next combine data from the CMB, HST Key Project, 2dF galaxy redshift survey, supernovae Ia and big-bang nucleosynthesis. The Monte Carlo method allows the rapid investigation of a large number of parameters, and we present results from 6 and 9 parameter analyses of flat models, and an 11 parameter analysis of non-flat models. Our results include constraints on the neutrino mass (m_nu < 0.3eV), equation of state of the dark energy, and the tensor amplitude, as well as demonstrating the effect of additional parameters on the base parameter constraints. In a series of appendices we describe the many uses of importance sampling, including computing results from new data and accuracy correction of results generated from an approximate method. We also discuss the different ways of converting parameter samples to parameter constraints, the effect of the prior, assess the goodness of fit and consistency, and describe the use of analytic marginalization over normalization parameters.

[ascl:1106.026]
RECFAST: Calculate the Recombination History of the Universe

RECFAST calculates the recombination of H, HeI, and HeII in the early Universe; this involves a line-by-line treatment of each atomic level. It differs in comparison to previous calculations in two major ways: firstly, the ionization fraction x_e is approximately 10% smaller for redshifts <~800, due to non-equilibrium processes in the excited states of H, and secondly, HeI recombination is much slower than previously thought, and is delayed until just before H recombines. RECFAST enables fast computation of the ionization history (and quantities such as the power spectrum of CMB anisotropies which depend on it) for arbitrary cosmologies.

[ascl:1105.001]
STILTS: Starlink Tables Infrastructure Library Tool Set

The STIL Tool Set is a set of command-line tools based on STIL, the Starlink Tables Infrastructure Library. It deals with the processing of tabular data; the package has been designed for, but is not restricted to, astronomical tables such as object catalogues. Some of the tools are generic and can work with multiple formats (including FITS, VOTable, CSV, SQL and ASCII), and others are specific to the VOTable format. In some ways, STILTS forms the command-line counterpart of the GUI table analysis tool TOPCAT. The package is robust, fully documented, and designed for efficiency, especially with very large datasets.

Facilities offered include:

- format conversion
- crossmatching
- plotting
- column calculation and rearrangement
- row selections
- data and metadata manipulation and display
- sorting
- statistical calculations
- histogram calculation
- data validation
- VO service access

[ascl:1105.002]
PACCE: Perl Algorithm to Compute Continuum and Equivalent Widths

PACCE (Perl Algorithm to Compute continuum and Equivalent Widths) computes continuum and equivalent widths. PACCE is able to determine mean continuum and continuum at line center values, which are helpful in stellar population studies, and is also able to compute the uncertainties in the equivalent widths using photon statistics.

[ascl:1105.003]
The DTFE public software: The Delaunay Tessellation Field Estimator code

We present the DTFE public software, a code for reconstructing fields from a discrete set of samples/measurements using the maximum of information contained in the point distribution. The code is written in C++ using the CGAL library and is parallelized using OpenMP. The software was designed for the analysis of cosmological data but can be used in other fields where one must interpolate quantities given at a discrete point set. The software comes with a wide suite of options to facilitate the analysis of 2- and 3-dimensional data and of both numerical simulations and galaxy redshift surveys. For comparison purposes, the code also implements the TSC and SPH grid interpolation methods. The code comes with an extensive user guide detailing the program options, examples and the inner workings of the code.

[ascl:1105.004]
SLiM: A Code for the Simulation of Wave Propagation through an Inhomogeneous, Magnetised Solar Atmosphere

The semi-spectral linear MHD (SLiM) code follows the interaction of linear waves through an inhomogeneous three-dimensional solar atmosphere. The background model allows almost arbitrary perturbations of density, temperature, sound speed as well as magnetic and velocity fields. The code is useful in understanding the helioseismic signatures of various solar features, including sunspots.

[ascl:1105.005]
ChaNGa: Charm N-body GrAvity solver

ChaNGa (Charm N-body GrAvity solver) performs collisionless N-body simulations. It can perform cosmological simulations with periodic boundary conditions in comoving coordinates or simulations of isolated stellar systems. It also can include hydrodynamics using the Smooth Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) technique. It uses a Barnes-Hut tree to calculate gravity, with hexadecapole expansion of nodes and Ewald summation for periodic forces. Timestepping is done with a leapfrog integrator with individual timesteps for each particle.

[ascl:1105.006]
SPARC: Seismic Propagation through Active Regions and Convection

The Seismic Propagation through Active Regions and Convection (SPARC) code was developed by S. Hanasoge. The acoustic wavefield in SPARC is simulated by numerically solving the linearised 3-D Euler equations in Cartesian geometry (e.g., see Hanasoge, Duvall and Couvidat (2007)). Spatial derivatives are calculated using sixth-order compact finite differences (Lele,1992) and time evolution is achieved through the repeated application of an optimized second-order five-stage Runge-Kutta scheme (Hu, 1996). Periodic horizontal boundaries are used.

[ascl:1105.007]
Sunspot Models

This IDL code creates a thick magneto-static structure with parameters of a typical sunspot in a solar like photosphere - chromosphere. The variable parameters are field strength on the axis, radius, and Wilson depression (displacement of the atmosphere on the axis with respect to the field-free atmosphere). Output are magnetic field vector, pressure and density distributions with radius and height. The structure has azimuthal symmetry. The codes are relatively self explanatory and the download packages contain README files.

[ascl:1105.008]
Flux Tube Model

This Fortran code computes magnetohydrostatic flux tubes and sheets according to the method of Steiner, Pneuman, & Stenflo (1986) A&A 170, 126-137. The code has many parameters contained in one input file that are easily modified. Extensive documentation is provided in README files.

[ascl:1105.009]
Ray Tracing Codes: run_tau, run_raypath, and ray_kernel

Time-distance helioseismology aims to measure and interpret the travel times of waves propagating between two points located on the solar surface. The travel times are then inverted to infer sub-surface properties that are encoded in the measurements. The trajectory of the waves generally follows that of the infinite-frequency ray path, although they are sensitive to perturbations off of this path. Finite-frequency sensitivity kernels are thus needed to give more accurate inversion results.

Ray tracing codes calculate travel time kernels for a ray. There are three main codes which calculate the group time as a function of distance, the ray paths as well as the phase and group times along the path, and the ray kernels for the sound speed squared.

[ascl:1105.010]
CASTRO: Multi-dimensional Eulerian AMR Radiation-hydrodynamics Code

Almgren, A. S.; Beckner, V. E.; Bell, J. B.; Day, M. S.; Howell, L. H.; Katz, M; Lijewski, M. J.; Malone, C.; Nonaka, A.; Singer, M.; Zhang, W; Zingale, M.

CASTRO is a multi-dimensional Eulerian AMR radiation-hydrodynamics code that includes stellar equations of state, nuclear reaction networks, and self-gravity. Initial target applications for CASTRO include Type Ia and Type II supernovae. CASTRO supports calculations in 1-d, 2-d and 3-d Cartesian coordinates, as well as 1-d spherical and 2-d cylindrical (r-z) coordinate systems. Time integration of the hydrodynamics equations is based on an unsplit version of the the piecewise parabolic method (PPM) with new limiters that avoid reducing the accuracy of the scheme at smooth extrema. CASTRO can follow an arbitrary number of isotopes or elements. The atomic weights and amounts of these elements are used to calculate the mean molecular weight of the gas required by the equation of state. CASTRO supports several different approaches to solving for self-gravity. The most general is a full Poisson solve for the gravitational potential. CASTRO also supports a monopole approximation for gravity, and a constant gravity option is also available. The CASTRO software is written in C++ and Fortran, and is based on the BoxLib software framework developed by CCSE.

[ascl:1105.011]
Ganalyzer: A tool for automatic galaxy image analysis

Ganalyzer is a model-based tool that automatically analyzes and classifies galaxy images. Ganalyzer works by separating the galaxy pixels from the background pixels, finding the center and radius of the galaxy, generating the radial intensity plot, and then computing the slopes of the peaks detected in the radial intensity plot to measure the spirality of the galaxy and determine its morphological class. Unlike algorithms that are based on machine learning, Ganalyzer is based on measuring the spirality of the galaxy, a task that is difficult to perform manually, and in many cases can provide a more accurate analysis compared to manual observation. Ganalyzer is simple to use, and can be easily embedded into other image analysis applications. Another advantage is its speed, which allows it to analyze ~10,000,000 galaxy images in five days using a standard modern desktop computer. These capabilities can make Ganalyzer a useful tool in analyzing large datasets of galaxy images collected by autonomous sky surveys such as SDSS, LSST or DES.

[ascl:1105.012]
Stagger: MHD Method for Modeling Star Formation

Stagger is an astrophysical MHD code actively used to model star formation. It is equipped with a multi-frequency radiative transfer module and a comprehensive equation of state module that includes a large number of atomic and molecular species, to be able to compute realistic 3-D models of the near-surface layers of stars. The current version of the code allows a discretization that explicitly conserves mass, momentum, energy, and magnetic flux. The tensor formulation of the viscosity ensures that the viscous force is insensitive to the coordinate system orientation, thereby avoiding artificial grid-alignment.

[ascl:1105.013]
CAMB Sources: Number Counts, Lensing & Dark-age 21cm Power Spectra

We relate the observable number of sources per solid angle and redshift to the underlying proper source density and velocity, background evolution and line-of-sight potentials. We give an exact result in the case of linearized perturbations assuming general relativity. This consistently includes contributions of the source density perturbations and redshift distortions, magnification, radial displacement, and various additional linear terms that are small on sub-horizon scales. In addition we calculate the effect on observed luminosities, and hence the result for sources observed as a function of flux, including magnification bias and radial-displacement effects. We give the corresponding linear result for a magnitude-limited survey at low redshift, and discuss the angular power spectrum of the total count distribution. We also calculate the cross-correlation with the CMB polarization and temperature including Doppler source terms, magnification, redshift distortions and other velocity effects for the sources, and discuss why the contribution of redshift distortions is generally small. Finally we relate the result for source number counts to that for the brightness of line radiation, for example 21-cm radiation, from the sources.

[ascl:1105.014]
PSRCHIVE: Development Library for the Analysis of Pulsar Astronomical Data

PSRCHIVE is an Open Source C++ development library for the analysis of pulsar astronomical data. It implements an extensive range of algorithms for use in pulsar timing, polarimetric calibration, single-pulse analyses, RFI mitigation, scintillation studies, etc. These tools are utilized by a powerful suite of user-end programs that come with the library.

[ascl:1104.001]
TomograPy: A Fast, Instrument-Independent, Solar Tomography Software

TomograPy is an open-source software freely available on the Python Package Index that can perform fast tomographic inversions that scale linearly with the number of measurements, linearly with the length of the reconstruction cube (and not the number of voxels) and linearly with the number of cores and can use data from different sources and with a variety of physical models. For performance, TomograPy uses a parallelized-projection algorithm. It relies on the World Coordinate System standard to manage various data sources. A variety of inversion algorithms are provided to perform the tomographic-map estimation. A test suite is provided along with the code to ensure software quality. Since it makes use of the Siddon algorithm it is restricted to rectangular parallelepiped voxels but the spherical geometry of the corona can be handled through proper use of priors.

[ascl:1104.002]
AstroBEAR: Adaptive Mesh Refinement Code for Ideal Hydrodynamics & Magnetohydrodynamics

AstroBEAR is a modular hydrodynamic & magnetohydrodynamic code environment designed for a variety of astrophysical applications. It uses the BEARCLAW package, a multidimensional, Eulerian computational code used to solve hyperbolic systems of equations. AstroBEAR allows adaptive-mesh-refinment (AMR) simulations in 2, 2.5 (i.e., cylindrical), and 3 dimensions, in either cartesian or curvilinear coordinates. Parallel applications are supported through the MPI architecture. AstroBEAR is written in Fortran 90/95 using standard libraries.

AstroBEAR supports hydrodynamic (HD) and magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) applications using a variety of spatial and temporal methods. MHD simulations are kept divergence-free via the constrained transport (CT) methods of Balsara & Spicer. Three different equation of state environments are available: ideal gas, gas with differing isentropic γ, and the analytic Thomas-Fermi formulation of A.R. Bell.

[ascl:1104.003]
Starburst99: Synthesis Models for Galaxies with Active Star Formation

Leitherer, Claus; Schaerer, Daniel; Goldader, Jeff; Gonzalez-Delgado, Rosa; Robert, Carmelle; Foo Kune, Denis; de Mello, Duilia; Devost, Daniel; Heckman, Timothy M.; Aloisi, Alessandra; Martins, Lucimara; Vazquez, Gerardo

Starburst99 is a comprehensive set of model predictions for spectrophotometric and related properties of galaxies with active star formation. The models are presented in a homogeneous way for five metallicities between Z = 0.040 and 0.001 and three choices of the initial mass function. The age coverage is 10^6 to 10^9 yr. Spectral energy distributions are used to compute colors and other quantities.

[ascl:1104.004]
MASSCLEAN: MASSive CLuster Evolution and ANalysis Package

MASSCLEAN is a sophisticated and robust stellar cluster image and photometry simulation package. This package is able to create color-magnitude diagrams and standard FITS images in any of the traditional optical and near-infrared bands based on cluster characteristics input by the user, including but not limited to distance, age, mass, radius and extinction. At the limit of very distant, unresolved clusters, we have checked the integrated colors created in MASSCLEAN against those from other simple stellar population (SSP) models with consistent results. Because the algorithm populates the cluster with a discrete number of tenable stars, it can be used as part of a Monte Carlo Method to derive the probabilistic range of characteristics (integrated colors, for example) consistent with a given cluster mass and age.

[ascl:1104.005]
GALAXEV: Evolutionary Stellar Population Synthesis Models

GALAXEV is a library of evolutionary stellar population synthesis models computed using the new isochrone synthesis code of Bruzual & Charlot (2003). This code allows one to computes the spectral evolution of stellar populations in wide ranges of ages and metallicities at a resolution of 3 Å across the whole wavelength range from 3200 Å to 9500 Å, and at lower resolution outside this range.

[ascl:1104.006]
LECTOR: Line-strengths in One-dimensional ASCII Spectra

LECTOR is a Fortran 77 code that measures line-strengths in one dimensional ascii spectra. The code returns the values of the Lick indices as well as those of Vazdekis & Arimoto 1999, Vazdekis et al. 2001, Rose 1994, Jones & Worthey 1995 and Cenarro et al. 2001. The code measures as many indices as you wish if the limits of two pseudocontinua (at each side of the feature) and the feature itself (i.e. Lick-style index definition) are provided. The Lick-style indices could be either expressed in pseudo-equivalent widths or in magnitudes. If requested the program provides index error estimates on the basis of photon statistics.

[ascl:1104.007]
ULySS: A Full Spectrum Fitting Package

ULySS (University of Lyon Spectroscopic Analysis Software) is an open-source software package written in the GDL/IDL language to analyze astronomical data. ULySS fits a spectrum with a linear combination of non-linear components convolved with a line-of-sight velocity distribution (LOSVD) and multiplied by a polynomial continuum. ULySS is used to study stellar populations of galaxies and star clusters and atmospheric parameters of stars.

[ascl:1104.008]
Rmodel: Determining Stellar Population Parameters

This program determines stellar population parameters (e.g. age, metallicity, IMF slope,...), using as input a pair of line-strength indices, through the interpolation in SSP model predictions. Both linear and bivariate fits are computed to perform the interpolation.

[ascl:1104.009]
r-Java: An r-process Code and Graphical User Interface for Heavy-Element Nucleosynthesis

r-Java performs r-process nucleosynthesis calculations. It has a simple graphical user interface and is carries out nuclear statistical equilibrium (NSE) as well as static and dynamic r-process calculations for a wide range of input parameters. r-Java generates an abundance pattern based on a general entropy expression that can be applied to degenerate as well as non-degenerate matter, which allows tracking of the rapid density and temperature evolution of the ejecta during the initial stages of ejecta expansion.

[ascl:1104.010]
GALFIT: Detailed Structural Decomposition of Galaxy Images

GALFIT is a two-dimensional (2-D) fitting algorithm designed to extract structural components from galaxy images, with emphasis on closely modeling light profiles of spatially well-resolved, nearby galaxies observed with the Hubble Space Telescope. The algorithm improves on previous techniques in two areas: 1.) by being able to simultaneously fit a galaxy with an arbitrary number of components, and 2.) with optimization in computation speed, suited for working on large galaxy images. 2-D models such as the "Nuker'' law, the Sersic (de Vaucouleurs) profile, an exponential disk, and Gaussian or Moffat functions are used. The azimuthal shapes are generalized ellipses that can fit disky and boxy components. Many galaxies with complex isophotes, ellipticity changes, and position-angle twists can be modeled accurately in 2-D. When examined in detail, even simple-looking galaxies generally require at least three components to be modeled accurately rather than the one or two components more often employed. This is illustrated by way of seven case studies, which include regular and barred spiral galaxies, highly disky lenticular galaxies, and elliptical galaxies displaying various levels of complexities. A useful extension of this algorithm is to accurately extract nuclear point sources in galaxies.

[ascl:1104.011]
DAOPHOT: Crowded-field Stellar Photometry Package

The DAOPHOT program exploits the capability of photometrically linear image detectors to perform stellar photometry in crowded fields. Raw CCD images are prepared prior to analysis, and following the obtaining of an initial star list with the FIND program, synthetic aperture photometry is performed on the detected objects with the PHOT routine. A local sky brightness and a magnitude are computed for each star in each of the specified stellar apertures, and for crowded fields, the empirical point-spread function must then be obtained for each data frame. The GROUP routine divides the star list for a given frame into optimum subgroups, and then the NSTAR routine is used to obtain photometry for all the stars in the frame by means of least-squares profile fits.

[ascl:1104.012]
CHIWEI: A Code of Goodness of Fit Tests for Weighted and Unweighed Histograms

A self-contained Fortran-77 program for goodness of fit tests for histograms with weighted entries as well as with unweighted entries is presented. The code calculates test statistic for case of histogram with normalized weights of events and for case of unnormalized weights of events.

[ascl:1104.013]
BEARCLAW: Boundary Embedded Adaptive Refinement Conservation LAW package

The BEARCLAW package is a multidimensional, Eulerian AMR-capable computational code written in Fortran to solve hyperbolic systems for astrophysical applications. It is part of AstroBEAR, a hydrodynamic & magnetohydrodynamic code environment designed for a variety of astrophysical applications which allows simulations in 2, 2.5 (i.e., cylindrical), and 3 dimensions, in either cartesian or curvilinear coordinates.

[ascl:1104.014]
A Correction to the Standard Galactic Reddening Map: Passive Galaxies as Standard Crayons

We present corrections to the Schlegel, Finkbeiner, Davis (SFD98) reddening maps over the Sloan Digital Sky Survey northern Galactic cap area. To find these corrections, we employ what we dub the "standard crayon" method, in which we use passively evolving galaxies as color standards by which to measure deviations from the reddening map. We select these passively evolving galaxies spectroscopically, using limits on the H alpha and O II equivalent widths to remove all star-forming galaxies from the SDSS main galaxy catalog. We find that by correcting for known reddening, redshift, color-magnitude relation, and variation of color with environmental density, we can reduce the scatter in color to below 3% in the bulk of the 151,637 galaxies we select. Using these galaxies we construct maps of the deviation from the SFD98 reddening map at 4.5 degree resolution, with 1-sigma error of ~ 1.5 millimagnitudes E(B-V). We find that the SFD98 maps are largely accurate with most of the map having deviations below 3 millimagnitudes E(B-V), though some regions do deviate from SFD98 by as much as 50%. The maximum deviation found is 45 millimagnitudes in E(B-V), and spatial structure of the deviation is strongly correlated with the observed dust temperature, such that SFD98 underpredicts reddening in regions of low dust temperature. The maps of these deviations, as well as their errors, are made available to the scientific community as supplemental correction to SFD98 at the URL below.

[ascl:1103.001]
Difmap: Synthesis Imaging of Visibility Data

Difmap is a program developed for synthesis imaging of visibility data from interferometer arrays of radio telescopes world-wide. Its prime advantages over traditional packages are its emphasis on interactive processing, speed, and the use of Difference mapping techniques.

[ascl:1103.002]
PGPLOT: Device-independent Graphics Package for Simple Scientific Graphs

The PGPLOT Graphics Subroutine Library is a Fortran- or C-callable, device-independent graphics package for making simple scientific graphs. It is intended for making graphical images of publication quality with minimum effort on the part of the user. For most applications, the program can be device-independent, and the output can be directed to the appropriate device at run time.

The PGPLOT library consists of two major parts: a device-independent part and a set of device-dependent "device handler" subroutines for output on various terminals, image displays, dot-matrix printers, laser printers, and pen plotters. Common file formats supported include PostScript and GIF.

PGPLOT itself is written mostly in standard Fortran-77, with a few non-standard, system-dependent subroutines. PGPLOT subroutines can be called directly from a Fortran-77 or Fortran-90 program. A C binding library (cpgplot) and header file (cpgplot.h) are provided that allow PGPLOT to be called from a C or C++ program; the binding library handles conversion between C and Fortran argument-passing conventions.

[ascl:1103.003]
S2PLOT: Three-dimensional (3D) Plotting Library

We present a new, three-dimensional (3D) plotting library with advanced features, and support for standard and enhanced display devices. The library - S2PLOT - is written in C and can be used by C, C++ and FORTRAN programs on GNU/Linux and Apple/OSX systems. S2PLOT draws objects in a 3D (x,y,z) Cartesian space and the user interactively controls how this space is rendered at run time. With a PGPLOT inspired interface, S2PLOT provides astronomers with elegant techniques for displaying and exploring 3D data sets directly from their program code, and the potential to use stereoscopic and dome display devices. The S2PLOT architecture supports dynamic geometry and can be used to plot time-evolving data sets, such as might be produced by simulation codes. In this paper, we introduce S2PLOT to the astronomical community, describe its potential applications, and present some example uses of the library.

[ascl:1103.004]
SPLASH: Interactive Visualization Tool for Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics Simulations

SPLASH (formerly SUPERSPHPLOT) visualizes output from (astrophysical) simulations using the Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) method in one, two and three dimensions. Written in Fortran 90, it uses the PGPLOT graphics subroutine library for plotting. It is based around a command-line menu structure but utilizes the interactive capabilities of PGPLOT to manipulate data interactively in the plotting window. SPLASH is fully interactive; visualizations can be changed rapidly at the touch of a button (e.g. zooming, rotating, shifting cross section positions etc). Data is read directly from the code dump format giving rapid access to results and the visualization is advanced forwards and backwards through timesteps by single keystrokes. SPLASH uses the SPH kernel to render plots of not only density but other physical quantities, giving a smooth representation of the data.

[ascl:1103.005]
Splotch: Ray Tracer to Visualize SPH Simulations

Splotch is a light and fast, publicly available, ray-tracer software tool which supports the effective visualization of cosmological simulations data. The algorithm it relies on is designed to deal with point-like data, optimizing the ray-tracing calculation by ordering the particles as a function of their 'depth', defined as a function of one of the coordinates or other associated parameters. Realistic three-dimensional impressions are reached through a composition of the final colour in each pixel properly calculating emission and absorption of individual volume elements.

[ascl:1103.006]
GLESP 2.0: Gauss-Legendre Sky Pixelization for CMB Analysis

Doroshkevich, A. G.; Naselsky, P. D.; Verkhodanov, O. V.; Novikov, D. I.; Turchaninov, V. I.; Novikov, I. D.; Christensen, P. R.; Chiang, L.-Y.

GLESP is a pixelization scheme for the cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation maps. This scheme is based on the Gauss-Legendre polynomials zeros and allows one to create strict orthogonal expansion of the map.

[ascl:1103.007]
VisIt: Interactive Parallel Visualization and Graphical Analysis Tool

VisIt is a free interactive parallel visualization and graphical analysis tool for viewing scientific data on Unix and PC platforms. Users can quickly generate visualizations from their data, animate them through time, manipulate them, and save the resulting images for presentations. VisIt contains a rich set of visualization features so that you can view your data in a variety of ways. It can be used to visualize scalar and vector fields defined on two- and three-dimensional (2D and 3D) structured and unstructured meshes. VisIt was designed to handle very large data set sizes in the terascale range and yet can also handle small data sets in the kilobyte range. See the table below for more details about the tool’s features.

VisIt was developed by the Department of Energy (DOE) Advanced Simulation and Computing Initiative (ASCI) to visualize and analyze the results of terascale simulations. It was developed as a framework for adding custom capabilities and rapidly deploying new visualization technologies. Although the primary driving force behind the development of VisIt was for visualizing terascale data, it is also well suited for visualizing data from typical simulations on desktop systems.

[ascl:1103.008]
Parallel HOP: A Scalable Halo Finder for Massive Cosmological Data Sets

Modern N-body cosmological simulations contain billions ($10^9$) of dark matter particles. These simulations require hundreds to thousands of gigabytes of memory, and employ hundreds to tens of thousands of processing cores on many compute nodes. In order to study the distribution of dark matter in a cosmological simulation, the dark matter halos must be identified using a halo finder, which establishes the halo membership of every particle in the simulation. The resources required for halo finding are similar to the requirements for the simulation itself. In particular, simulations have become too extensive to use commonly-employed halo finders, such that the computational requirements to identify halos must now be spread across multiple nodes and cores. Here we present a scalable-parallel halo finding method called Parallel HOP for large-scale cosmological simulation data. Based on the halo finder HOP, it utilizes MPI and domain decomposition to distribute the halo finding workload across multiple compute nodes, enabling analysis of much larger datasets than is possible with the strictly serial or previous parallel implementations of HOP. We provide a reference implementation of this method as a part of the toolkit yt, an analysis toolkit for Adaptive Mesh Refinement (AMR) data that includes complementary analysis modules. Additionally, we discuss a suite of benchmarks that demonstrate that this method scales well up to several hundred tasks and datasets in excess of $2000^3$ particles. The Parallel HOP method and our implementation can be readily applied to any kind of N-body simulation data and is therefore widely applicable. Parallel HOP is part of yt.

[ascl:1103.009]
SPHRAY: A Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics Ray Tracer for Radiative Transfer

SPHRAY, a Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) ray tracer, is designed to solve the 3D, time dependent, radiative transfer (RT) equations for arbitrary density fields. The SPH nature of SPHRAY makes the incorporation of separate hydrodynamics and gravity solvers very natural. SPHRAY relies on a Monte Carlo (MC) ray tracing scheme that does not interpolate the SPH particles onto a grid but instead integrates directly through the SPH kernels. Given initial conditions and a description of the sources of ionizing radiation, the code will calculate the non-equilibrium ionization state (HI, HII, HeI, HeII, HeIII, e) and temperature (internal energy/entropy) of each SPH particle. The sources of radiation can include point like objects, diffuse recombination radiation, and a background field from outside the computational volume. The MC ray tracing implementation allows for the quick introduction of new physics and is parallelization friendly. A quick Axis Aligned Bounding Box (AABB) test taken from computer graphics applications allows for the acceleration of the raytracing component. We present the algorithms used in SPHRAY and verify the code by performing all the test problems detailed in the recent Radiative Transfer Comparison Project of Iliev et. al. The Fortran 90 source code for SPHRAY and example SPH density fields are made available online.

[ascl:1103.010]
Hydra: A Parallel Adaptive Grid Code

We describe the first parallel implementation of an adaptive particle-particle, particle-mesh code with smoothed particle hydrodynamics. Parallelisation of the serial code, "Hydra," is achieved by using CRAFT, a Cray proprietary language which allows rapid implementation of a serial code on a parallel machine by allowing global addressing of distributed memory.

The collisionless variant of the code has already completed several 16.8 million particle cosmological simulations on a 128 processor Cray T3D whilst the full hydrodynamic code has completed several 4.2 million particle combined gas and dark matter runs. The efficiency of the code now allows parameter-space explorations to be performed routinely using $64^3$ particles of each species. A complete run including gas cooling, from high redshift to the present epoch requires approximately 10 hours on 64 processors.

[ascl:1103.011]
AP3M: Adaptive Particle-particle, Particle-mesh Code

AP^{3}M is an adaptive particle-particle, particle-mesh code. It is older than Hydra (ascl:1103.010) but faster and more memory-efficient for dark-matter only calculations. The Adaptive P^{3}M technique (AP^{3}M) is built around the standard P^{3}M algorithm. AP^{3}M produces fully equivalent forces to P^{3}M but represents a more efficient implementation of the force splitting idea of P^{3}M. The AP^{3}M program may be used in any of the three modes with an appropriate choice of input parameter.

[ascl:1103.012]
Pyflation: Second Order Perturbations During Inflation Beyond Slow-roll

Pyflation calculates cosmological perturbations during an inflationary expansion of the universe. The modules in the pyflation Python package can be used to run simulations of different scalar field models of the early universe. The main classes are contained in the cosmomodels module and include simulations of background fields and first order and second order perturbations. The sourceterm package contains modules required for the computation of the term required for the evolution of second order perturbations.

Alongside the Python package, the bin directory contains Python scripts which can run first and second order simulations. A helper script called pyflation-qsubstart.py sets up a full second order run (including background, first order and source calculations) to be used on queueing system which contains the qsub executable (e.g. a Rocks cluster).

[ascl:1103.014]
ParaView: Data Analysis and Visualization Application

ParaView is an open-source, multi-platform data analysis and visualization application. ParaView users can quickly build visualizations to analyze their data using qualitative and quantitative techniques. The data exploration can be done interactively in 3D or programmatically using ParaView's batch processing capabilities.

ParaView was developed to analyze extremely large datasets using distributed memory computing resources. It can be run on supercomputers to analyze datasets of terascale as well as on laptops for smaller data.

[ascl:1103.015]
Cloudy_3D: Quick Pseudo-3D Photoionization Code

We developed a new quick pseudo-3D photoionization code based on Cloudy (G. Ferland) and IDL (RSI) tools. The code is running the 1D photoionization code Cloudy various times, changing at each run the input parameters (e.g. inner radius, density law) according to an angular law describing the morphology of the object. Then a cube is generated by interpolating the outputs of Cloudy. In each cell of the cube, the physical conditions (electron temperature and density, ionic fractions) and the emissivities of lines are determined. Associated tools (VISNEB and VELNEB_3D) are used to rotate the nebula and to compute surface brightness maps and emission line profiles, given a velocity law and taking into account the effect of the thermal broadening and eventually the turbulence. Integrated emission line profiles are computed, given aperture shapes and positions (seeing and instrumental width effects are included). The main advantage of this tool is the short time needed to compute a model (a few tens minutes).

[ascl:1102.001]
N-MODY: A Code for Collisionless N-body Simulations in Modified Newtonian Dynamics

N-MODY is a parallel particle-mesh code for collisionless N-body simulations in modified Newtonian dynamics (MOND). N-MODY is based on a numerical potential solver in spherical coordinates that solves the non-linear MOND field equation, and is ideally suited to simulate isolated stellar systems. N-MODY can be used also to compute the MOND potential of arbitrary static density distributions. A few applications of N-MODY indicate that some astrophysically relevant dynamical processes are profoundly different in MOND and in Newtonian gravity with dark matter.

[ascl:1102.002]
PBL: Particle-Based Lensing for Gravitational Lensing Mass Reconstructions of Galaxy Clusters

We present Particle-Based Lensing (PBL), a new technique for gravitational lensing mass reconstructions of galaxy clusters. Traditionally, most methods have employed either a finite inversion or gridding to turn observational lensed galaxy ellipticities into an estimate of the surface mass density of a galaxy cluster. We approach the problem from a different perspective, motivated by the success of multi-scale analysis in smoothed particle hydrodynamics. In PBL, we treat each of the lensed galaxies as a particle and then reconstruct the potential by smoothing over a local kernel with variable smoothing scale. In this way, we can tune a reconstruction to produce constant signal-noise throughout, and maximally exploit regions of high information density.

PBL is designed to include all lensing observables, including multiple image positions and fluxes from strong lensing, as well as weak lensing signals including shear and flexion. In this paper, however, we describe a shear-only reconstruction, and apply the method to several test cases, including simulated lensing clusters, as well as the well-studied ``Bullet Cluster'' (1E0657-56). In the former cases, we show that PBL is better able to identify cusps and substructures than are grid-based reconstructions, and in the latter case, we show that PBL is able to identify substructure in the Bullet Cluster without even exploiting strong lensing measurements.

[ascl:1102.003]
GRAVLENS: Computational Methods for Gravitational Lensing

Modern applications of strong gravitational lensing require the ability to use precise and varied observational data to constrain complex lens models. Two sets of computational methods for lensing calculations are discussed. The first is a new algorithm for solving the lens equation for general mass distributions. This algorithm makes it possible to apply arbitrarily complicated models to observed lenses. The second is an evaluation of techniques for using observational data including positions, fluxes, and time delays of point-like images, as well as maps of extended images, to constrain models of strong lenses. The techniques presented here are implemented in a flexible and user-friendly software package called gravlens, which is made available to the community.

[ascl:1102.004]
LENSTOOL: A Gravitational Lensing Software for Modeling Mass Distribution of Galaxies and Clusters (strong and weak regime)

We describe a procedure for modelling strong lensing galaxy clusters with parametric methods, and to rank models quantitatively using the Bayesian evidence. We use a publicly available Markov chain Monte-Carlo (MCMC) sampler ('Bayesys'), allowing us to avoid local minima in the likelihood functions. To illustrate the power of the MCMC technique, we simulate three clusters of galaxies, each composed of a cluster-scale halo and a set of perturbing galaxy-scale subhalos. We ray-trace three light beams through each model to produce a catalogue of multiple images, and then use the MCMC sampler to recover the model parameters in the three different lensing configurations. We find that, for typical Hubble Space Telescope (HST)-quality imaging data, the total mass in the Einstein radius is recovered with ~1-5% error according to the considered lensing configuration. However, we find that the mass of the galaxies is strongly degenerated with the cluster mass when no multiple images appear in the cluster centre. The mass of the galaxies is generally recovered with a 20% error, largely due to the poorly constrained cut-off radius. Finally, we describe how to rank models quantitatively using the Bayesian evidence. We confirm the ability of strong lensing to constrain the mass profile in the central region of galaxy clusters in this way. Ultimately, such a method applied to strong lensing clusters with a very large number of multiple images may provide unique geometrical constraints on cosmology.

[ascl:1102.005]
MRLENS: Multi-Resolution methods for gravitational LENSing

The MRLENS package offers a new method for the reconstruction of weak lensing mass maps. It uses the multiscale entropy concept, which is based on wavelets, and the False Discovery Rate which allows us to derive robust detection levels in wavelet space. We show that this new restoration approach outperforms several standard techniques currently used for weak shear mass reconstruction. This method can also be used to separate E and B modes in the shear field, and thus test for the presence of residual systematic effects. We concentrate on large blind cosmic shear surveys, and illustrate our results using simulated shear maps derived from N-Body Lambda-CDM simulations with added noise corresponding to both ground-based and space-based observations.

[ascl:1102.006]
NBODY Codes: Numerical Simulations of Many-body (N-body) Gravitational Interactions

I review the development of direct N-body codes at Cambridge over nearly 40 years, highlighting the main stepping stones. The first code (NBODY1) was based on the simple concepts of a force polynomial combined with individual time steps, where numerical problems due to close encounters were avoided by a softened potential. Fortuitously, the elegant Kustaanheimo-Stiefel two-body regularization soon permitted small star clusters to be studied (NBODY3). Subsequent extensions to unperturbed three-body and four-body regularization proved beneficial in dealing with multiple interactions. Investigations of larger systems became possible with the Ahmad-Cohen neighbor scheme which was used more than 20 years ago for expanding universe models of 4000 galaxies (NBODY2). Combining the neighbor scheme with the regularization procedures enabled more realistic star clusters to be considered (NBODY5). After a period of simulations with no apparent technical progress, chain regularization replaced the treatment of compact subsystems (NBODY3, NBODY5). More recently, the Hermite integration method provided a major advance and has been implemented on the special-purpose HARP computers (NBODY4) together with an alternative version for workstations and supercomputers (NBODY6). These codes also include a variety of algorithms for stellar evolution based on fast lookup functions. The treatment of primordial binaries contains efficient procedures for chaotic two-body motion as well as tidal circularization, and special attention is paid to hierarchical systems and their stability. This family of N-body codes constitutes a powerful tool for dynamical simulations which is freely available to the astronomical community, and the massive effort owes much to collaborators.

[ascl:1102.007]
PixeLens: A Portable Modeler of Lensed Quasars

We introduce and implement two novel ideas for modeling lensed quasars. The first is to require different lenses to agree about H_{0}. This means that some models for one lens can be ruled out by data on a different lens. We explain using two worked examples. One example models 1115+080 and 1608+656 (time-delay quadruple systems) and 1933+503 (a prospective time-delay system) all together, yielding time-delay predictions for the third lens and a 90% confidence estimate of H_{0}^{-1}=14.6+9.4-1.7 Gyr (H_{0}=67+9-26 km s^{-1} Mpc^{-1}) assuming ΩM=0.3 and Ω_{Λ}=0.7. The other example models the time-delay doubles 1520+530, 1600+434, 1830-211, and 2149-275, which gives H_{0}^{-1}=14.5+3.3-1.5 Gyr (H_{0}=67+8-13 km s^{-1} Mpc^{-1}). Our second idea is to write the modeling software as a highly interactive Java applet, which can be used both for coarse-grained results inside a browser and for fine-grained results on a workstation. Several obstacles come up in trying to implement a numerically intensive method thus, but we overcome them.

[ascl:1102.008]
PMFAST: Towards Optimal Parallel PM N-body Codes

The parallel PM N-body code PMFAST is cost-effective and memory-efficient. PMFAST is based on a two-level mesh gravity solver where the gravitational forces are separated into long and short range components. The decomposition scheme minimizes communication costs and allows tolerance for slow networks. The code approaches optimality in several dimensions. The force computations are local and exploit highly optimized vendor FFT libraries. It features minimal memory overhead, with the particle positions and velocities being the main cost. The code features support for distributed and shared memory parallelization through the use of MPI and OpenMP, respectively.

The current release version uses two grid levels on a slab decomposition, with periodic boundary conditions for cosmological applications. Open boundary conditions could be added with little computational overhead. Timing information and results from a recent cosmological production run of the code using a 3712^3 mesh with 6.4 x 10^9 particles are available.

[ascl:1102.009]
AHF: Amiga's Halo Finder

Cosmological simulations are the key tool for investigating the different processes involved in the formation of the universe from small initial density perturbations to galaxies and clusters of galaxies observed today. The identification and analysis of bound objects, halos, is one of the most important steps in drawing useful physical information from simulations. In the advent of larger and larger simulations, a reliable and parallel halo finder, able to cope with the ever-increasing data files, is a must. In this work we present the freely available MPI parallel halo finder AHF. We provide a description of the algorithm and the strategy followed to handle large simulation data. We also describe the parameters a user may choose in order to influence the process of halo finding, as well as pointing out which parameters are crucial to ensure untainted results from the parallel approach. Furthermore, we demonstrate the ability of AHF to scale to high-resolution simulations.

[ascl:1102.010]
SEREN: A SPH code for star and planet formation simulations

Hubber, David; Batty, Chris; McLeod, Andrew; Whitworth, Anthony; Bisbas, Thomas; Stamatellos, Dimitrios; Walch, Stefanie; Rawiraswattana, Krisada; Goodwin, Simon

SEREN is an astrophysical Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics code designed to investigate star and planet formation problems using self-gravitating hydrodynamics simulations of molecular clouds, star-forming cores, and protostellar disks.

SEREN is written in Fortran 95/2003 with a modular philosophy for adding features into the code. Each feature can be easily activated or deactivated by way of setting options in the Makefile before compiling the code. This has the added benefit of allowing unwanted features to be removed at the compilation stage resulting in a smaller and faster executable program. SEREN is written with OpenMP directives to allow parallelization on shared-memory architecture.

[ascl:1102.011]
Identikit 2: An Algorithm for Reconstructing Galactic Collisions

Using a combination of self-consistent and test-particle techniques, Identikit 1 provided a way to vary the initial geometry of a galactic collision and instantly visualize the outcome. Identikit 2 uses the same techniques to define a mapping from the current morphology and kinematics of a tidal encounter back to the initial conditions. By requiring that various regions along a tidal feature all originate from a single disc with a unique orientation, this mapping can be used to derive the initial collision geometry. In addition, Identikit 2 offers a robust way to measure how well a particular model reproduces the morphology and kinematics of a pair of interacting galaxies. A set of eight self-consistent simulations is used to demonstrate the algorithm's ability to search a ten-dimensional parameter space and find near-optimal matches; all eight systems are successfully reconstructed.

[ascl:1102.012]
CPROPS: Bias-free Measurement of Giant Molecular Cloud Properties

CPROPS, written in IDL, processes FITS data cubes containing molecular line emission and returns the properties of molecular clouds contained within it. Without corrections for the effects of beam convolution and sensitivity to GMC properties, the resulting properties may be severely biased. This is particularly true for extragalactic observations, where resolution and sensitivity effects often bias measured values by 40% or more. We correct for finite spatial and spectral resolutions with a simple deconvolution and we correct for sensitivity biases by extrapolating properties of a GMC to those we would expect to measure with perfect sensitivity. The resulting method recovers the properties of a GMC to within 10% over a large range of resolutions and sensitivities, provided the clouds are marginally resolved with a peak signal-to-noise ratio greater than 10. We note that interferometers systematically underestimate cloud properties, particularly the flux from a cloud. The degree of bias depends on the sensitivity of the observations and the (u,v) coverage of the observations. In the Appendix to the paper we present a conservative, new decomposition algorithm for identifying GMCs in molecular-line observations. This algorithm treats the data in physical rather than observational units, does not produce spurious clouds in the presence of noise, and is sensitive to a range of morphologies. As a result, the output of this decomposition should be directly comparable among disparate data sets.

The CPROPS package contains within it a distribution of the CLUMPFIND code written by Jonathan Williams and described in Williams, de Geus, and Blitz(1994). The package is available as a stand alone package. If you make use of the CLUMPFIND functionality in the CPROPS package for a publication, please cite Jonathan's original article.

[ascl:1102.013]
Cactus: HPC infrastructure and programming tools

Cactus provides computational scientists and engineers with a collaborative, modular and portable programming environment for parallel high performance computing. Cactus can make use of many other technologies for HPC, such as Samrai, HDF5, PETSc and PAPI, and several application domains such as numerical relativity, computational fluid dynamics and quantum gravity are developing open community toolkits for Cactus.

[ascl:1102.014]
Einstein Toolkit for Relativistic Astrophysics

The Einstein Toolkit is a collection of software components and tools for simulating and analyzing general relativistic astrophysical systems. Such systems include gravitational wave space-times, collisions of compact objects such as black holes or neutron stars, accretion onto compact objects, core collapse supernovae and Gamma-Ray Bursts.

The Einstein Toolkit builds on numerous software efforts in the numerical relativity community including CactusEinstein, Whisky, and Carpet. The Einstein Toolkit currently uses the Cactus Framework as the underlying computational infrastructure that provides large-scale parallelization, general computational components, and a model for collaborative, portable code development.

[ascl:1102.015]
PMFASTIC: Initial condition generator for PMFAST

PMFASTIC is a parallel initial condition generator, a slab decomposition Fortran 90 parallel cosmological initial condition generator for use with PMFAST. Files required for generating initial dark matter particle distributions and instructions are included, however one would require CMBFAST to create alternative transfer functions.

[ascl:1102.016]
HERACLES: 3D Hydrodynamical Code to Simulate Astrophysical Fluid Flows

Audit, Edouard; González, Matthias; Vaytet, Neil; Fromang, Sebastien; Hennebelle, Patrick; Teyssier, Romain; Tremblin, Pascal; Thooris, Bruno

HERACLES is a 3D hydrodynamical code used to simulate astrophysical fluid flows. It uses a finite volume method on fixed grids to solve the equations of hydrodynamics, MHD, radiative transfer and gravity. This software is developed at the Service d'Astrophysique, CEA/Saclay as part of the COAST project and is registered under the CeCILL license. HERACLES simulates astrophysical fluid flows using a grid based Eulerian finite volume Godunov method. It is capable of simulating pure hydrodynamical flows, magneto-hydrodynamic flows, radiation hydrodynamic flows (using either flux limited diffusion or the M1 moment method), self-gravitating flows using a Poisson solver or all of the above. HERACLES uses cartesian, spherical and cylindrical grids.

[ascl:1102.017]
FARGO: Fast Advection in Rotating Gaseous Objects

FARGO is an efficient and simple modification of the standard transport algorithm used in explicit eulerian fixed polar grid codes, aimed at getting rid of the average azimuthal velocity when applying the Courant condition. This results in a much larger timestep than the usual procedure, and it is particularly well-suited to the description of a Keplerian disk where one is traditionally limited by the very demanding Courant condition on the fast orbital motion at the inner boundary. In this modified algorithm, the timestep is limited by the perturbed velocity and by the shear arising from the differential rotation. The speed-up resulting from the use of the FARGO algorithm is problem dependent. In the example presented in the code paper below, which shows the evolution of a Jupiter sized protoplanet embedded in a minimum mass protoplanetary nebula, the FARGO algorithm is about an order of magnitude faster than a traditional transport scheme, with a much smaller numerical diffusivity.

[ascl:1102.018]
Karma: Visualisation Test-Bed Toolkit

Karma is a toolkit for interprocess communications, authentication, encryption, graphics display, user interface and manipulating the Karma network data structure. It contains KarmaLib (the structured libraries and API) and a large number of modules (applications) to perform many standard tasks. A suite of visualisation tools are distributed with the library.

[ascl:1102.019]
HOP: A Group-finding Algorithm for N-body Simulations

We describe a new method (HOP) for identifying groups of particles in N-body simulations. Having assigned to every particle an estimate of its local density, we associate each particle with the densest of the Nh particles nearest to it. Repeating this process allows us to trace a path, within the particle set itself, from each particle in the direction of increasing density. The path ends when it reaches a particle that is its own densest neighbor; all particles reaching the same such particle are identified as a group. Combined with an adaptive smoothing kernel for finding the densities, this method is spatially adaptive, coordinate-free, and numerically straight-forward. One can proceed to process the output by truncating groups at a particular density contour and combining groups that share a (possibly different) density contour. While the resulting algorithm has several user-chosen parameters, we show that the results are insensitive to most of these, the exception being the outer density cutoff of the groups.

[ascl:1102.020]
SKID: Finding Gravitationally Bound Groups in N-body Simulations

SKID finds gravitationally bound groups in N-body simulations. The SKID program will group different types of particles depending on the type of input binary file. This could be either dark matter particles, gas particles, star particles or gas and star particles depending on what is in the input tipsy binary file. Once groups with at least a certain minimum number of members have been determined, SKID will remove particles which are not bound to the group. SKID must use the original positions of all the particles to determine whether or not particles are bound. This procedure which we call unbinding, is again dependent on the type of grouping we are dealing with. There are two cases, one for dark matter only or star particles only (case 1 unbinding), the other for inputs including gas (also stars in a dark matter environment this is case 2 unbinding).

Skid version 1.3 is a much improved version of the old denmax-1.1 version. The new name was given to avoid confusion with the DENMAX program of Gelb & Bertschinger, and although it is based on the same idea it represents a substantial evolution in the method.

[ascl:1102.021]
DIRT: Dust InfraRed Toolbox

DIRT is a Java applet for modelling astrophysical processes in circumstellar dust shells around young and evolved stars. With DIRT, you can select and display over 500,000 pre-run model spectral energy distributions (SEDs), find the best-fit model to your data set, and account for beam size in model fitting. DIRT also allows you to manipulate data and models with an interactive viewer, display gas and dust density and temperature profiles, and display model intensity profiles at various wavelengths.

[ascl:1102.022]
PDRT: Photo Dissociation Region Toolbox

Ultraviolet photons from O and B stars strongly influence the structure and emission spectra of the interstellar medium. The UV photons energetic enough to ionize hydrogen (hν > 13.6 eV) will create the H II region around the star, but lower energy UV photons escape. These far-UV photons (6 eV < hν < 13.6 eV) are still energetic enough to photodissociate molecules and to ionize low ionization-potential atoms such as carbon, silicon, and sulfur. They thus create a photodissociation region (PDR) just outside the H II region. In aggregate, these PDRs dominates the heating and cooling of the neutral interstellar medium.

As part of the Web Infrared Tool Shed (WITS) we have developed a web tool, called the PDR Toolbox, that allows users to determine the physical parameters of a PDR from a set of spectral line observations. Typical observations of both Galactic and extragalactic PDRs come from ground-based millimeter and submillimeter telescopes such as CARMA or the CSO, or space-based telescopes such as Spitzer, ISO, SOFIA, and Herschel. Given a set of observations of spectral line intensities, PDR Toolbox will compute best-fit FUV incident intensity and cloud density based on our published models of PDR emission.

[ascl:1102.023]
21cmFAST: A Fast, Semi-Numerical Simulation of the High-Redshift 21-cm Signal

21cmFAST is a powerful semi-numeric modeling tool designed to efficiently simulate the cosmological 21-cm signal. The code generates 3D realizations of evolved density, ionization, peculiar velocity, and spin temperature fields, which it then combines to compute the 21-cm brightness temperature. Although the physical processes are treated with approximate methods, the results were compared to a state-of-the-art large-scale hydrodynamic simulation, and the findings indicate good agreement on scales pertinent to the upcoming observations (>~ 1 Mpc). The power spectra from 21cmFAST agree with those generated from the numerical simulation to within 10s of percent, down to the Nyquist frequency. Results were shown from a 1 Gpc simulation which tracks the cosmic 21-cm signal down from z=250, highlighting the various interesting epochs. Depending on the desired resolution, 21cmFAST can compute a redshift realization on a single processor in just a few minutes. The code is fast, efficient, customizable and publicly available, making it a useful tool for 21-cm parameter studies.

[ascl:1102.024]
DiFX2: A more flexible, efficient, robust and powerful software correlator

Deller, A. T.; Brisken, W. F.; Phillips, C. J.; Morgan, J.; Alef, W.; Cappallo, R.; Middelberg, E.; Romney, J.; Rottmann, H.; Tingay, S. J.; Wayth, R.

Software correlation, where a correlation algorithm written in a high-level language such as C++ is run on commodity computer hardware, has become increasingly attractive for small to medium sized and/or bandwidth constrained radio interferometers. In particular, many long baseline arrays (which typically have fewer than 20 elements and are restricted in observing bandwidth by costly recording hardware and media) have utilized software correlators for rapid, cost-effective correlator upgrades to allow compatibility with new, wider bandwidth recording systems and improve correlator flexibility. The DiFX correlator, made publicly available in 2007, has been a popular choice in such upgrades and is now used for production correlation by a number of observatories and research groups worldwide. Here we describe the evolution in the capabilities of the DiFX correlator over the past three years, including a number of new capabilities, substantial performance improvements, and a large amount of supporting infrastructure to ease use of the code. New capabilities include the ability to correlate a large number of phase centers in a single correlation pass, the extraction of phase calibration tones, correlation of disparate but overlapping sub-bands, the production of rapidly sampled filterbank and kurtosis data at minimal cost, and many more. The latest version of the code is at least 15% faster than the original, and in certain situations many times this value. Finally, we also present detailed test results validating the correctness of the new code.

[ascl:1102.025]
LensPix: Fast MPI full sky transforms for HEALPix

Modelling of the weak lensing of the CMB will be crucial to obtain correct cosmological parameter constraints from forthcoming precision CMB anisotropy observations. The lensing affects the power spectrum as well as inducing non-Gaussianities. We discuss the simulation of full sky CMB maps in the weak lensing approximation and describe a fast numerical code. The series expansion in the deflection angle cannot be used to simulate accurate CMB maps, so a pixel remapping must be used. For parameter estimation accounting for the change in the power spectrum but assuming Gaussianity is sufficient to obtain accurate results up to Planck sensitivity using current tools. A fuller analysis may be required to obtain accurate error estimates and for more sensitive observations. We demonstrate a simple full sky simulation and subsequent parameter estimation at Planck-like sensitivity.

[ascl:1102.026]
CAMB: Code for Anisotropies in the Microwave Background

We present a fully covariant and gauge-invariant calculation of the evolution of anisotropies in the cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation. We use the physically appealing covariant approach to cosmological perturbations, which ensures that all variables are gauge-invariant and have a clear physical interpretation. We derive the complete set of frame-independent, linearised equations describing the (Boltzmann) evolution of anisotropy and inhomogeneity in an almost Friedmann-Robertson-Walker (FRW) cold dark matter (CDM) universe. These equations include the contributions of scalar, vector and tensor modes in a unified manner. Frame-independent equations for scalar and tensor perturbations, which are valid for any value of the background curvature, are obtained straightforwardly from the complete set of equations. We discuss the scalar equations in detail, including the integral solution and relation with the line of sight approach, analytic solutions in the early radiation dominated era, and the numerical solution in the standard CDM model. Our results confirm those obtained by other groups, who have worked carefully with non-covariant methods in specific gauges, but are derived here in a completely transparent fashion.

[ascl:1102.027]
ZENO: N-body and SPH Simulation Codes

The ZENO software package integrates N-body and SPH simulation codes with a large array of programs to generate initial conditions and analyze numerical simulations. Written in C, the ZENO system is portable between Mac, Linux, and Unix platforms. It is in active use at the Institute for Astronomy (IfA), at NRAO, and possibly elsewhere.

Zeno programs can perform a wide range of simulation and analysis tasks. While many of these programs were first created for specific projects, they embody algorithms of general applicability and embrace a modular design strategy, so existing code is easily applied to new tasks. Major elements of the system include structured data file utilities facilitate basic operations on binary data, including import/export of ZENO data to other systems; snapshot generation routines to create particle distributions with various properties; systems with user-specified density profiles can be realized in collisionless or gaseous form; multiple spherical and disk components may be set up in mutual equilibrium; and snapshot manipulation routines permit the user to sift, sort, and combine particle arrays, translate and rotate particle configurations, and assign new values to data fields associated with each particle.

Simulation codes include both pure N-body and combined N-body/SPH programs. Pure N-body codes are available in both uniprocessor and parallel versions. SPH codes offer a wide range of options for gas physics, including isothermal, adiabatic, and radiating models. Snapshot analysis programs calculate temporal averages, evaluate particle statistics, measure shapes and density profiles, compute kinematic properties, and identify and track objects in particle distributions. Visualization programs generate interactive displays and produce still images and videos of particle distributions; the user may specify arbitrary color schemes and viewing transformations.

[ascl:1102.028]
ZEUS-MP/2: Computational Fluid Dynamics Code

Hayes, John C.; Norman, Michael L.; Fiedler, Robert A.; Bordner, James O.; Li, Pak Shing; Clark, Stephen E.; Ud-Doula, Asif; Mac Low, Mordecai-Mark

ZEUS-MP is a multiphysics, massively parallel, message-passing implementation of the ZEUS code. ZEUS-MP offers an MHD algorithm that is better suited for multidimensional flows than the ZEUS-2D module by virtue of modifications to the method of characteristics scheme first suggested by Hawley & Stone. This MHD module is shown to compare quite favorably to the TVD scheme described by Ryu et al. ZEUS-MP is the first publicly available ZEUS code to allow the advection of multiple chemical (or nuclear) species. Radiation hydrodynamic simulations are enabled via an implicit flux-limited radiation diffusion (FLD) module. The hydrodynamic, MHD, and FLD modules can be used, singly or in concert, in one, two, or three space dimensions. In addition, so-called 1.5D and 2.5D grids, in which the "half-D'' denotes a symmetry axis along which a constant but nonzero value of velocity or magnetic field is evolved, are supported. Self-gravity can be included either through the assumption of a GM/r potential or through a solution of Poisson's equation using one of three linear solver packages (conjugate gradient, multigrid, and FFT) provided for that purpose. Point-mass potentials are also supported.

Because ZEUS-MP is designed for large simulations on parallel computing platforms, considerable attention is paid to the parallel performance characteristics of each module in the code. Strong-scaling tests involving pure hydrodynamics (with and without self-gravity), MHD, and RHD are performed in which large problems (2563 zones) are distributed among as many as 1024 processors of an IBM SP3. Parallel efficiency is a strong function of the amount of communication required between processors in a given algorithm, but all modules are shown to scale well on up to 1024 processors for the chosen fixed problem size.

[ascl:1101.001]
Second-order Tight-coupling Code

Prior to recombination photons, electrons, and atomic nuclei rapidly scattered and behaved, almost, like a single tightly-coupled photon-baryon plasma. In order to solve the cosmological perturbation equations during that time, Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) codes use the so-called tight-coupling approximation in which the problematic terms (i.e. the source of the stiffness) are expanded in inverse powers of the Thomson Opacity. Most codes only keep the terms linear in the inverse Thomson Opacity. We have developed a second-order tight-coupling code to test the validity of the usual first-order tight-coupling code. It is based on the publicly available code CAMB.

[ascl:1101.002]
NDSPMHD Smoothed Particle Magnetohydrodynamics Code

This paper presents an overview and introduction to Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics and Magnetohydrodynamics in theory and in practice. Firstly, we give a basic grounding in the fundamentals of SPH, showing how the equations of motion and energy can be self-consistently derived from the density estimate. We then show how to interpret these equations using the basic SPH interpolation formulae and highlight the subtle difference in approach between SPH and other particle methods. In doing so, we also critique several `urban myths' regarding SPH, in particular the idea that one can simply increase the `neighbour number' more slowly than the total number of particles in order to obtain convergence. We also discuss the origin of numerical instabilities such as the pairing and tensile instabilities. Finally, we give practical advice on how to resolve three of the main issues with SPMHD: removing the tensile instability, formulating dissipative terms for MHD shocks and enforcing the divergence constraint on the particles, and we give the current status of developments in this area. Accompanying the paper is the first public release of the NDSPMHD SPH code, a 1, 2 and 3 dimensional code designed as a testbed for SPH/SPMHD algorithms that can be used to test many of the ideas and used to run all of the numerical examples contained in the paper.

[ascl:1101.003]
IGMtransfer: Intergalactic Radiative Transfer Code

This document describes the publically available numerical code "IGMtransfer", capable of performing intergalactic radiative transfer (RT) of light in the vicinity of the Lyman alpha (Lya) line. Calculating the RT in a (possibly adaptively refined) grid of cells resulting from a cosmological simulation, the code returns 1) a "transmission function", showing how the intergalactic medium (IGM) affects the Lya line at a given redshift, and 2) the "average transmission" of the IGM, making it useful for studying the results of reionization simulations.

[ascl:1101.004]
InterpMC: Caching and Interpolated Likelihoods -- Accelerating Cosmological Monte Carlo Markov Chains

We describe a novel approach to accelerating Monte Carlo Markov Chains. Our focus is cosmological parameter estimation, but the algorithm is applicable to any problem for which the likelihood surface is a smooth function of the free parameters and computationally expensive to evaluate. We generate a high-order interpolating polynomial for the log-likelihood using the first points gathered by the Markov chains as a training set. This polynomial then accurately computes the majority of the likelihoods needed in the latter parts of the chains. We implement a simple version of this algorithm as a patch (InterpMC) to CosmoMC and show that it accelerates parameter estimatation by a factor of between two and four for well-converged chains. The current code is primarily intended as a "proof of concept", and we argue that there is considerable room for further performance gains. Unlike other approaches to accelerating parameter fits, we make no use of precomputed training sets or special choices of variables, and InterpMC is almost entirely transparent to the user.

[ascl:1101.005]
CMHOG: Code for Ideal Compressible Hydrodynamics

CMHOG (Connection Machine Higher Order Godunov) is a code for ideal compressible hydrodynamics based on the Lagrange-plus-remap version of the piecewise parabolic method (PPM) of Colella & Woodward (1984, J. Comp. Phys., 74, 1). It works in one-, two- or three-dimensional Cartesian coordinates with either an adiabatic or isothermal equation of state. A limited amount of extra physics has been added using operator splitting, including optically-thin radiative cooling, and chemistry for combustion simulations.

[ascl:1101.006]
NIRVANA: A Numerical Tool for Astrophysical Gas Dynamics

The NIRVANA code is capable of the simulation of multi-scale self-gravitational magnetohydrodynamics problems in three space dimensions employing the technique of adaptive mesh refinement. The building blocks of NIRVANA are (i) a fully conservative, divergence-free Godunov-type central scheme for the solution of the equations of magnetohydrodynamics; (ii) a block-structured mesh refinement algorithm which automatically adds and removes elementary grid blocks whenever necessary to achieve adequate resolution and; (iii) an adaptive mesh Poisson solver based on multigrid philosophy which incorporates the so-called elliptic matching condition to keep the gradient of the gravitational potential continous at fine/coarse mesh interfaces.

[ascl:1101.007]
Galaxia: A Code to Generate a Synthetic Survey of the Milky Way

We present here a fast code for creating a synthetic survey of the Milky Way. Given one or more color-magnitude bounds, a survey size and geometry, the code returns a catalog of stars in accordance with a given model of the Milky Way. The model can be specified by a set of density distributions or as an N-body realization. We provide fast and efficient algorithms for sampling both types of models. As compared to earlier sampling schemes which generate stars at specified locations along a line of sight, our scheme can generate a continuous and smooth distribution of stars over any given volume. The code is quite general and flexible and can accept input in the form of a star formation rate, age metallicity relation, age velocity dispersion relation and analytic density distribution functions. Theoretical isochrones are then used to generate a catalog of stars and support is available for a wide range of photometric bands. As a concrete example we implement the Besancon Milky Way model for the disc. For the stellar halo we employ the simulated stellar halo N-body models of Bullock & Johnston (2005). In order to sample N-body models, we present a scheme that disperses the stars spawned by an N-body particle, in such a way that the phase space density of the spawned stars is consistent with that of the N-body particles. The code is ideally suited to generating synthetic data sets that mimic near future wide area surveys such as GAIA, LSST and HERMES. As an application we study the prospect of identifying structures in the stellar halo with a simulated GAIA survey.

[ascl:1101.008]
CRASH: A Block-Adaptive-Mesh Code for Radiative Shock Hydrodynamics

van der Holst, B.; Toth, G.; Sokolov, I. V.; Powell, K. G.; Holloway, J. P.; Myra, E. S.; Stout, Q.; Adams, M. L.; Morel, J. E.; Drake, R. P.

We describe the CRASH (Center for Radiative Shock Hydrodynamics) code, a block adaptive mesh code for multi-material radiation hydrodynamics. The implementation solves the radiation diffusion model with the gray or multigroup method and uses a flux limited diffusion approximation to recover the free-streaming limit. The electrons and ions are allowed to have different temperatures and we include a flux limited electron heat conduction. The radiation hydrodynamic equations are solved in the Eulerian frame by means of a conservative finite volume discretization in either one, two, or three-dimensional slab geometry or in two-dimensional cylindrical symmetry. An operator split method is used to solve these equations in three substeps: (1) solve the hydrodynamic equations with shock-capturing schemes, (2) a linear advection of the radiation in frequency-logarithm space, and (3) an implicit solve of the stiff radiation diffusion, heat conduction, and energy exchange. We present a suite of verification test problems to demonstrate the accuracy and performance of the algorithms. The CRASH code is an extension of the Block-Adaptive Tree Solarwind Roe Upwind Scheme (BATS-R-US) code with this new radiation transfer and heat conduction library and equation-of-state and multigroup opacity solvers. Both CRASH and BATS-R-US are part of the publicly available Space Weather Modeling Framework (SWMF).

[ascl:1101.009]
MasQU: Finite Differences on Masked Irregular Stokes Q,U Grids

The detection of B-mode polarization in the CMB is one of the most important outstanding tests of inflationary cosmology. One of the necessary steps for extracting polarization information in the CMB is reducing contamination from so-called "ambiguous modes" on a masked sky, which contain leakage from the larger E-mode signal. This can be achieved by utilising derivative operators on the real-space Stokes Q and U parameters. This paper presents an algorithm and a software package to perform this procedure on the nearly full sky, i.e., with projects such as the Planck Surveyor and future satellites in mind; in particular, the package can perform finite differences on masked, irregular grids and is applied to a semi-regular spherical pixellization, the HEALPix grid. The formalism reduces to the known finite-difference solutions in the case of a regular grid. We quantify full-sky improvements on the possible bounds on the CMB B-mode signal. We find that in the specific case of E and B-mode separation, there exists a "pole problem" in our formalism which produces signal contamination at very low multipoles l. Several solutions to the "pole problem" are presented; one proposed solution facilitates a calculation of a general Gaussian quadrature scheme, which finds application in calculating accurate harmonic coefficients on the HEALPix sphere. Nevertheless, on a masked sphere the software represents a considerable reduction in B-mode noise from limited sky coverage.

[ascl:1101.010]
TOPCAT: Tool for OPerations on Catalogues And Tables

TOPCAT is an interactive graphical viewer and editor for tabular data. Its aim is to provide most of the facilities that astronomers need for analysis and manipulation of source catalogues and other tables, though it can be used for non-astronomical data as well. It understands a number of different astronomically important formats (including FITS and VOTable) and more formats can be added.

It offers a variety of ways to view and analyse tables, including a browser for the cell data themselves, viewers for information about table and column metadata, and facilities for 1-, 2-, 3- and higher-dimensional visualisation, calculating statistics and joining tables using flexible matching algorithms. Using a powerful and extensible Java-based expression language new columns can be defined and row subsets selected for separate analysis. Table data and metadata can be edited and the resulting modified table can be written out in a wide range of output formats.

It is a stand-alone application which works quite happily with no network connection. However, because it uses Virtual Observatory (VO) standards, it can cooperate smoothly with other tools in the VO world and beyond, such as VODesktop, Aladin and ds9. Between 2006 and 2009 TOPCAT was developed within the AstroGrid project, and is offered as part of a standard suite of applications on the AstroGrid web site, where you can find information on several other VO tools.

The program is written in pure Java and available under the GNU General Public Licence. It has been developed in the UK within the Starlink and AstroGrid projects, and under PPARC and STFC grants. Its underlying table processing facilities are provided by STIL.

[ascl:1011.001]
Identikit 1: A Modeling Tool for Interacting Disk Galaxies

By combining test-particle and self-consistent techniques, we have developed a method to rapidly explore the parameter space of galactic encounters. Our method, implemented in an interactive graphics program, can be used to find the parameters required to reproduce the observed morphology and kinematics of interacting disk galaxies. We test this system on an artificial data-set of 36 equal-mass merging encounters, and show that it is usually possible to reproduce the morphology and kinematics of these encounters and that a good match strongly constrains the encounter parameters.

[ascl:1011.002]
DAOSPEC: An Automatic Code for Measuring Equivalent Widths in High-resolution Stellar Spectra

DAOSPEC is a Fortran code for measuring equivalent widths of absorption lines in stellar spectra with minimal human involvement. It works with standard FITS format files and it is designed for use with high resolution (R>15000) and high signal-to-noise-ratio (S/N>30) spectra that have been binned on a linear wavelength scale. First, we review the analysis procedures that are usually employed in the literature. Next, we discuss the principles underlying DAOSPEC and point out similarities and differences with respect to conventional measurement techniques. Then experiments with artificial and real spectra are discussed to illustrate the capabilities and limitations of DAOSPEC, with special attention given to the issues of continuum placement; radial velocities; and the effects of strong lines and line crowding. Finally, quantitative comparisons with other codes and with results from the literature are also presented.

[ascl:1011.003]
ZPEG: An Extension of the Galaxy Evolution Model PEGASE.2

Photometric redshifts are estimated on the basis of template scenarios with the help of the code ZPEG, an extension of the galaxy evolution model PEGASE.2 and available on the PEGASE web site. The spectral energy distribution (SED) templates are computed for nine spectral types including starburst, irregular, spiral and elliptical. Dust, extinction and metal effects are coherently taken into account, depending on evolution scenarios. The sensitivity of results to adding near-infrared colors and IGM absorption is analyzed. A comparison with results of other models without evolution measures the evolution factor which systematically increases the estimated photometric redshift values by $Delta z$ > 0.2 for z > 1.5. Moreover we systematically check that the evolution scenarios match observational standard templates of nearby galaxies, implying an age constraint of the stellar population at z=0 for each type. The respect of this constraint makes it possible to significantly improve the accuracy of photometric redshifts by decreasing the well-known degeneracy problem. The method is applied to the HDF-N sample. From fits on SED templates by a $chi^2$-minimization procedure, not only is the photometric redshift derived but also the corresponding spectral type and the formation redshift $z_for$ when stars first formed. Early epochs of galaxy formation z > 5 are found from this new method and results are compared to faint galaxy count interpretations.

[ascl:1011.004]
MARS: The MAGIC Analysis and Reconstruction Software

Moralejo, R. A.; Gaug, M.; Carmona, E.; Colin, P.; Delgado, C.; Lombardi, S.; Mazin, D.; Scalzotto, V.; Sitarek, J.; Tescaro, D.

With the commissioning of the second MAGIC gamma-ray Cherenkov telescope situated close to MAGIC-I, the standard analysis package of the MAGIC collaboration, MARS, has been upgraded in order to perform the stereoscopic reconstruction of the detected atmospheric showers. MARS is a ROOT-based code written in C++, which includes all the necessary algorithms to transform the raw data recorded by the telescopes into information about the physics parameters of the observed targets. An overview of the methods for extracting the basic shower parameters is presented, together with a description of the tools used in the background discrimination and in the estimation of the gamma-ray source spectra.

[ascl:1011.005]
Shape of Cosmic String Loops

Complicated cosmic string loops will fragment until they reach simple, non-intersecting ("stable") configurations. Through extensive numerical study we characterize these attractor loop shapes including their length, velocity, kink, and cusp distributions. We find that an initial loop containing $M$ harmonic modes will, on average, split into 3M stable loops. These stable loops are approximately described by the degenerate kinky loop, which is planar and rectangular, independently of the number of modes on the initial loop. This is confirmed by an analytic construction of a stable family of perturbed degenerate kinky loops. The average stable loop is also found to have a 40% chance of containing a cusp. We examine the properties of stable loops of different lengths and find only slight variation. Finally we develop a new analytic scheme to explicitly solve the string constraint equations.

[ascl:1011.006]
DAME: A Web Oriented Infrastructure for Scientific Data Mining & Exploration

Brescia, Massimo; Longo, Giuseppe; Djorgovski, George S.; Cavuoti, Stefano; D'Abrusco, Raffaele; Donalek, Ciro; di Guido, Alessandro; Fiore, Michelangelo; Garofalo, Mauro; Laurino, Omar; Mahabal, Ashish; Manna, Francesco; Nocella, Alfonso; D'Angelo, Giovanni; Paolillo, Maurizio

DAME (DAta Mining & Exploration) is an innovative, general purpose, Web-based, VObs compliant, distributed data mining infrastructure specialized in Massive Data Sets exploration with machine learning methods. Initially fine tuned to deal with astronomical data only, DAME has evolved in a general purpose platform which has found applications also in other domains of human endeavor.

[ascl:1011.007]
RAMSES: A new N-body and hydrodynamical code

A new N-body and hydrodynamical code, called RAMSES, is presented. It has been designed to study structure formation in the universe with high spatial resolution. The code is based on Adaptive Mesh Refinement (AMR) technique, with a tree based data structure allowing recursive grid refinements on a cell-by-cell basis. The N-body solver is very similar to the one developed for the ART code (Kravtsov et al. 97), with minor differences in the exact implementation. The hydrodynamical solver is based on a second-order Godunov method, a modern shock-capturing scheme known to compute accurately the thermal history of the fluid component. The accuracy of the code is carefully estimated using various test cases, from pure gas dynamical tests to cosmological ones. The specific refinement strategy used in cosmological simulations is described, and potential spurious effects associated to shock waves propagation in the resulting AMR grid are discussed and found to be negligible. Results obtained in a large N-body and hydrodynamical simulation of structure formation in a low density LCDM universe are finally reported, with 256^3 particles and 4.1 10^7 cells in the AMR grid, reaching a formal resolution of 8192^3. A convergence analysis of different quantities, such as dark matter density power spectrum, gas pressure power spectrum and individual haloes temperature profiles, shows that numerical results are converging down to the actual resolution limit of the code, and are well reproduced by recent analytical predictions in the framework of the halo model.

[ascl:1011.008]
Binsim: Visualising Interacting Binaries in 3D

Binsim produces images of interacting binaries for any system parameters. Though not suitable for modeling light curves or spectra, the resulting images are helpful in visualizing the geometry of a given system and are also helpful in talks and educational work. The code uses the OpenGL API to do the 3D rendering. The software can produce images of cataclysmic variables and X-ray binaries, and can render the mass donor star, an axisymmetric disc (without superhumps, warps or spirals), the accretion stream and hotspot, and a "corona."

[ascl:1011.009]
DRAGON: Monte Carlo Generator of Particle Production from a Fragmented Fireball in Ultrarelativistic Nuclear Collisions

A Monte Carlo generator of the final state of hadrons emitted from an ultrarelativistic nuclear collision is introduced. An important feature of the generator is a possible fragmentation of the fireball and emission of the hadrons from fragments. Phase space distribution of the fragments is based on the blast wave model extended to azimuthally non-symmetric fireballs. Parameters of the model can be tuned and this allows to generate final states from various kinds of fireballs. A facultative output in the OSCAR1999A format allows for a comprehensive analysis of phase-space distributions and/or use as an input for an afterburner. DRAGON's purpose is to produce artificial data sets which resemble those coming from real nuclear collisions provided fragmentation occurs at hadronisation and hadrons are emitted from fragments without any further scattering. Its name, DRAGON, stands for DRoplet and hAdron GeneratOr for Nuclear collisions. In a way, the model is similar to THERMINATOR, with the crucial difference that emission from fragments is included.

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