Skip to content

Simulation Archive

The concepts behind the SimulationArchive are described in detail in Rein & Tamayo 2017. Further examples of how to work with the SimulationArchive are provided in an iPython and C example.

Creating Simulation Archive snapshots

The following code shows how to manually append a Simulation Archive snapshot to a file. If the file does not exist yet, the function outputs a new binary file. If the file already exists, the function will append a Simulation Archive snapshot to the existing file.

struct reb_simulation* r = reb_create_simulation();
// ... work on simulation ...
reb_simulationarchive_snapshot(r, "archive.bin");

sim = rebound.Simulation()
# ... work on simulation ...
sim.simulationarchive_snapshot("archive.bin")
You can pass the optional argument deletefile=True to delete the file if it already exists. By default, the function appends a snapshot to existing files.

Instead of manually outputting each snapshot, you can also automate this process as shown below.

Regular time intervals

The following code automatically creates a Simulation Archive snapshot at regular intervals.

struct reb_simulation* r = reb_create_simulation();
// ... work on simulation ...
reb_simulationarchive_automate_interval(r, "archive.bin", 10.);
sim = rebound.Simulation()
# ... work on simulation ...
sim.automateSimulationArchive("archive.bin", interval=10.)

Regular number of timesteps

The following code automatically creates a Simulation Archive snapshot after a fixed number of timesteps.

struct reb_simulation* r = reb_create_simulation();
// ... work on simulation ...
reb_simulationarchive_automate_step(r, "archive.bin", 100);
sim = rebound.Simulation()
# ... work on simulation ...
sim.automateSimulationArchive("archive.bin", step=100)

Info

This method is in general more reliable than the interval method. The reason is that the number of timesteps is an integer valuem whereas the time is a floating point number. If you run long simulations, you might encounter issues with finite floating point precision. This only affects very high accuracy simulation where you want to make sure the outputs occur exactly at the right timestep.

Regular wall-time intervals

The following code automatically creates a Simulation Archive snapshot after a fixed wall-time. This is particularly useful for creating restart files when running long simulations. The wall-time is given in seconds.

struct reb_simulation* r = reb_create_simulation();
// ... work on simulation ...
reb_simulationarchive_automate_walltime(r, "archive.bin", 120.); // 2 minutes between snapshots
sim = rebound.Simulation()
# ... work on simulation ...
sim.automateSimulationArchive("archive.bin", walltime=120) # 2 minutes

Reading Simulation Archives

Reading one snapshot

The following example shows how to read in a specific snapshot of a Simulation Archive. If you pass a negative number for the snapshot, it will wrap around to the end of the Simulation Archive. For example, the last snapshot in the file would have the index -1, the second to last -2, and so on.

struct reb_simulationarchive* archive = reb_open_simulationarchive("archive.bin");
struct reb_simulation* r = reb_create_simulation_from_simulationarchive(archive, 12); // snapshot with index 12
reb_close_simulationarchive(archive);
// ... work on simulation ...

sim = rebound.Simulation("archive.bin", snapshot=12)
# ... work on simulation ...
In python, snapshot=-1 is the default. Thus, sim = rebound.Simulation("archive.bin") will create a new simulation from the last snapshot in the archive.