The cosmic code comparison project

Katrin Heitmann, Zarija Lukić, Patricia Fasel, Salman Habib, Michael S. Warren, Martin White, James Ahrens, Lee Ankeny, Ryan Armstrong, Brian O'Shea, Paul M. Ricker, Volker Springel, Joachim Stadel, Hy Trac

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Current and upcoming cosmological observations allow us to probe structures on smaller and smaller scales, entering highly nonlinear regimes. In order to obtain theoretical predictions in these regimes, large cosmological simulations have to be carried out. The promised high accuracy from observations makes the simulation task very demanding: the simulations have to be at least as accurate as the observations. This requirement can only be fulfilled by carrying out an extensive code verification program. The first step of such a program is the comparison of different cosmology codes including gravitational interactions only. In this paper, we extend a recently carried out code comparison project to include five more simulation codes. We restrict our analysis to a small cosmological volume which allows us to investigate properties of halos. For the matter power spectrum and the mass function, the previous results hold, with the codes agreeing at the 10% level over wide dynamic ranges. We extend our analysis to the comparison of halo profiles and investigate the halo count as a function of local density. We introduce and discuss ParaView as a flexible analysis tool for cosmological simulations, the use of which immensely simplifies the code comparison task.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number015003
JournalComputational Science and Discovery
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Numerical Analysis
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Computational Mathematics


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