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[ascl:1208.011] Fewbody: Numerical toolkit for simulating small-N gravitational dynamics

Fewbody is a numerical toolkit for simulating small-N gravitational dynamics. It is a general N-body dynamics code, although it was written for the purpose of performing scattering experiments, and therefore has several features that make it well-suited for this purpose. Fewbody uses the 8th-order Runge-Kutta Prince-Dormand integration method with 9th-order error estimate and adaptive timestep to advance the N-body system forward in time. It integrates the usual formulation of the N-body equations in configuration space, but allows for the option of global pairwise Kustaanheimo-Stiefel (K-S) regularization (Heggie 1974; Mikkola 1985). The code uses a binary tree algorithm to classify the N-body system into a set of independently bound hierarchies, and performs collisions between stars in the “sticky star” approximation. Fewbody contains a collection of command line utilities that can be used to perform individual scattering and N-body interactions, but is more generally a library of functions that can be used from within other codes.

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