Installing ACE

ACE is written in Python and uses various Python libraries for a graphical user interface (wxPython), numerics (numpy), scientific routines (scipy), and plots (matplotlib). Information about Python can be found here.

To run ACE these libraries must first be installed on your computer. The simplest way to install them is to download the Enthought Python Distribution (EPD), which is a complete scientific python distribution and combines all of the required python libraries into a single package.  You can download this distribution here:

At this time supported platforms are Windows XP, Macintosh OS X, Linux (RedHat, Ubuntu, OpenSuSE) and Solaris.  After installing the Python libraries ACE is ready to run.  The source code for ACE is platform independent and is available from the following link:

Download this file to your computer, uncompress it, and put the newly created ACE folder anywhere. ACE is presently at version 1.0.5, but all changes so far have been bug fixes to the GUI.

To start ACE, enter this folder and open folder ‘src’.  In this directory is a file called  In Windows, you can launch ACE by double clicking:

Click on image to expand

Click on image to expand

On Mac/Linux machines, open a terminal window and change directory (cd) into the main ACE directory.  Then cd into src, then type ‘pythonw’ (or ‘python’ in Linux).  For example if you uncompressed ACE on your home directory the commands would be as follows:


The first time ACE starts it will compile all python files for your particular architecture, which can take some time.  However this will only happen once.

The first time ACE is run it will ask for the location of your repository.  This is a directory where your personal samples, modules and data collections are kept. It is a separate directory from ACE so that you can share it will colleagues for  collaboration purposes.  Conventionally it is located in the top level of your ACE directory, but you can move it anywhere:

Click on image to expand

Click on image to expand

When you have selected your repository (‘repo’) location it will become saved in your preferences file, so ACE will not ask again.  When the repo has been selected, a Sample Browser window will open, listing the 12 samples (2 for each nuclide type) that ship with ACE:

Click on image to expand

Click on image to expand

These can be deleted using the Delete Samples button at the bottom of the browser, or used to explore ACE before importing your own samples. Please let us know if you require support for other platforms. Before using ACE we recommend you look at the Quick Start Guide.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.