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I tried looking around for open source tools that would allow me to run simulations and build on top of the code with my own need(mainly mathematical simulations, but 3D visuals would be a bonus.), unfortunately I haven't really found many open source projects, so I think maybe this tools are somehow available on websites like NASA or other Foundations for astronomical research. Where would one go to find the actual professional software for astronomy research and simulations ?

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  • $\begingroup$ Specialist work will require specialist tools and even specially written and optimized code, however GNU Octave and GNU SciLab are general purpose tools with a scripting language largely compatible with MatLab. You'll need to specify more detail on specific requirements (e.g. what you're simulating and what level of detail/accuracy is required) to get a useful answer. $\endgroup$ May 24, 2020 at 2:24
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you, unfortunately I'm not experienced enough to know the exact tools I will need beforehand since I would need to try and which would suit better my research. I understand that the question is a little broad. Google this type of tools mostly show sky viewing software, its quite difficult to find something you don't know the name, if you have any link that could show the the way. Thanks. @StephenG $\endgroup$
    – syncastra
    May 24, 2020 at 2:41
  • $\begingroup$ "Simulations" may be too broad for one SE questions, do you think you can narrow this down to one class of problem first? A steady-state model of a star, formation of a galaxy, shockwaves and birth of new stars, solar system evolution, etc... $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    May 24, 2020 at 10:14

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Give GADGET-2 a check if you haven't already.

GADGET is a freely available code for cosmological N-body/SPH simulations on massively parallel computers with distributed memory. GADGET uses an explicit communication model that is implemented with the standardized MPI communication interface. The code can be run on essentially all supercomputer systems presently in use, including clusters of workstations or individual PCs.

GADGET computes gravitational forces with a hierarchical tree algorithm (optionally in combination with a particle-mesh scheme for long-range gravitational forces) and represents fluids by means of smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH). The code can be used for studies of isolated systems, or for simulations that include the cosmological expansion of space, both with or without periodic boundary conditions. In all these types of simulations, GADGET follows the evolution of a self-gravitating collisionless N-body system, and allows gas dynamics to be optionally included. Both the force computation and the time stepping of GADGET are fully adaptive, with a dynamic range which is, in principle, unlimited.

GADGET can therefore be used to address a wide array of astrophysically interesting problems, ranging from colliding and merging galaxies, to the formation of large-scale structure in the Universe. With the inclusion of additional physical processes such as radiative cooling and heating, GADGET can also be used to study the dynamics of the gaseous intergalactic medium, or to address star formation and its regulation by feedback processes.

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    $\begingroup$ +1 To avoid this being a link-only answer I've included a bit of information in case the link rots, breaks or changes. Also, people are sometimes unwilling to click on a link until they have an idea what might be there, so I added a bit of information which will hopefully encourage future readers to look into it further. $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    May 25, 2020 at 14:26
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    $\begingroup$ @uhoh Good point, much better! $\endgroup$
    – sbjartmar
    May 25, 2020 at 14:34
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There is a python package named Astropy. It contains modules to do many calculations in astronomy. Its not a model or simulation but could be used to solve many problems or data analysis tasks in astronomy or to preprocess the input for models and simulations. It is included in several python distributions.

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