VSim for Basic Simulations

VSimBasicSimAn excellent tool for learning basic electromagnetic, particle trajectory, and plasma physics


electrostatic particle in cell

An Educational Tool for Training in Basic Physics and Computational Physics

Learn basic plasma physics, including interactions of charged particles with electromagnetic and electrostatic fields, by using the particle-in-cell (PIC) methods or fluid methods in VSim for Basic Simulations (VSimBase) multiphysics simulation software. VSimBase provides basic electromagnetics, electrostatics, and self-consistent plasma modeling capability in slab geometries, including with periodic boundary conditions. Switching between 1, 2, or 3 dimensions is simple with VSim. VSimBase examples guide the user through the process of learning the problem, making VSimBase an excellent tool for students, scientists, and engineers to learn physics fundamentals.

With VSimBase, students can discover how both pure electromagnetic waves and plasma waves propagate, as well as determine the dispersion relations of Langmuir, upper-hybrid, and many other waves. Users can explore and model cyclotron oscillations, Bernstein modes, upper-hybrid modes, and other plasma waves.  Solving for electrostatic potentials with Dirichlet or Neumann boundary conditions on simulation boundaries, or solving electromagnetics with conducting boundaries and current sources, is straightforward. Using VSim simulation software, science instructors can illustrate concepts of instability growth and saturation in plasma sheath formation and collisionless plasma relaxation processes.

Physics Capabilities Ready to Grow With Your Requirements

VSimBase provides a basic set of physics simulation features that can be used stand-alone or in combination with one or more specialty VSim packages. Just as with Tech-X's comprehensive VSim simulation product, both visualization and analysis functionality is integrated into VSim for Basic Simulations with the user-friendly VSimComposer front end user interface. Because a rich set of examples for common electromagnetic (EM), electrostatic, magnetostatic, and plasma physics problems is included with VSimBase, you can immediately simulate and model real physics problems while learning to use VSim. Start with VSimBase, then when you are ready to simulate more complex plasma devices, microwave devices, electromagnetic models, or plasma acceleration models, add one or more other VSim packages.

Professional Quality Performance

Using VSimBase as a stand-alone simulation tool, physics educators can model and demonstrate classical electromagnetic problems and introductory plasma physics problems, as well as introduce a computational physics curriculum. Like all VSim packages, VSim for Basic Simulations, is commercial quality, professional software. VSimBase is a flexible, multiplatform, software tool for running computationally intensive electromagnetic, electrostatic, magnetostatic, and plasma simulations that easily installs and runs on the variety of systems available to students, including Windows, macOS, and Linux platforms.  Whether you run VSim on a laptop or a supercomputing cluster, your models will run lightning-fast using algorithms designed for the exacting demands of high performance computing systems.



  • Slab electrostatic simulation (ES)
  • Electromagnetics with conducting wall or periodic boundary conditions
  • Slab electromagnetic simulation (EM)
  • Electrostatics with Dirichlet, Neumann, or periodic boundary conditions
  • Ingoing ports
  • Outgoing ports
  • Charged Particles
  • Self-consistent charged particles, both relativistic and non relativistic
  • Variably weighted particles
  • Charge and current sources
  • Particle loaders and basic emitters
  • Absorbing and reflecting particle boundaries
  • Prescribed fields
  • 1D, 2D, 3D simulations
  • 1D, 2D, 3D visualization
  • Histories: time series data
  • Pluggable data analyzer architecture
  • Multiple data analyzers, such as particle binning
  • Menu-driven setup
  • Distributed memory parallelism


  • Basic Electromagnetics and Plasma Physics capabilities:
    • EM fields
    • Relativistic particles
    • Periodic and slab perfect conductor boundary conditions for fields
    • Slab absorbers for particles
  • Excellent educational tool








Example Simulations Included

Examples Using Visual Setup

Visual Setup Examples are ready to run and easy to use.  Running a Visual Setup Example and then customizing the settings for your own simulation is the fastest way to learn VSim.

Examples Using Text Setup

Code your simulation, then run it.  Text Setup Examples demonstrate how to format a simulation input file using code syntax. If you like the level of control available through designing your simulation using VSim code blocks and Python, use a Text Setup file as the basis for your simulation project.


Questions? Contact us.








Cylindrical Capacitor

VSim Two Stream Instability Dimulation

Two Stream Instability

Two oppositely propagating electron beams, with periodic boundaries and a sinusoidal variation in their velocities. A collision-less plasma instability arising from small charge imbalances can be seen.

VSim EM Plane Wave Simulation

EM Plane Wave

An electromagnetic plane wave with a sinusoidal amplitude is launched from the left side (x=0). The transverse (y, z) boundary conditions are periodic.


Dipole Above Conducting Plane

VSim Electrostatic Particle-in-Cell Simulation

Electrostatic Particle in Cell

This is a simulation of electrons in a box with conducting walls and particle absorbers, and with an immobile, background neutralizing charge density. The electrons move to the walls, creating a sheath.

VSim Parallel Plate Capacitor Simulation

Parallel Plate Capacitor

A parallel plate capacitor. Try varying the gap to see the dependence of the electric field on length. By default the y and z directions are periodic, modeling an infinite parallel plate capacitor.

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