NASA’s 2017-2018 Software Catalog is Out

Need some help sizing your beyond-low-Earth-orbit vehicle? Request NASA’s BLAST software. Need to forecast the weather on Venus? That would be Venus-GRAM (global reference atmospheric model). Or maybe you just want to play around with the NASA Tensegrity Robotics Toolkit. (We do!) Then it’s a good thing that part of NASA’s public mandate is making their software available. And the 2017-2018 Software Catalog (PDF) has just been released.

Unfortunately, not everything that NASA does is open source, and a substantial fraction of the software suites are only available for code “to be used on behalf of the U.S. Government”. But still, it’s very cool that NASA is opening up as much of their libraries as they are. Where else are you going to get access to orbital debris engineering models or cutting-edge fluid dynamics modelers and solvers, for free?

We already mentioned this in the Links column, but we think it’s worth repeating because we could use your help. The catalog is 154 pages long, and we haven’t quite finished leaf through every page. If you see anything awesome inside, let us know in the comments. Do any of you already use NASA’s open-source software?

16 thoughts on “NASA’s 2017-2018 Software Catalog is Out

      1. If you ever code something that “feels like a hack but it works” just remember that a CPU is literally a rock that we tricked into thinking

        not to oversimplify: first you have to flatten the rock and put lighting inside it

  1. I’ve been using the OVERFLOW CFD package along with a few other programs that go along with it (Chimera Grid Tools, PEGASUS 5, and PLOT3D) for doing model rocket simulations. Getting the code is a pain (lots of paperwork, several NDAs, and some back and forth mailing – as in snail mail); but it works great…and is an excuse to run my Sun Fire V890 deskside.

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