Roy and Niels

Roy and Niels

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

SHIELD-HIT12A demo version released

Here is a little sneak-preview of the upcoming release of SHIELD-HIT12A.

Pimp my Niva... (artist's impression of SHIELD-HIT12A).

SHIELD-HIT12A is a Monte Carlo particle transport code capable of transporting heavy ions through arbitrary media. The -A fork was made in 2010 from SHIELD-HIT08, and since then we have added plenty of new features, solved many bugs, increased calculation speed and optimized the nuclear models to new data on carbon-12 fragmentation.

A free demo version where the random seed and statistics are fixed to 10.000 particles can be downloaded from the project development page. There are builds for Linux and Windows systems (32- and 64 bit). It is a beta-release, but we would like to bring this demo version to a broader community, and thereby hopefully also fix some more bugs before we release the full version.

The new features in SHIELD-HIT12A are:
  • New simplified material and beam parameter parser in free format and extensible without breaking downward compability.
  • Including 279 ICRU default materials and elements, it has never been so easy to specify a material.
  • New beam model: divergence and focus distance can now be specified (thanks to Uli Weber from Marburg).
  • Arbitrary starting beam directions now possible.
  • New routine for Vavilov straggling, 5-6 times faster than the original one by Rotondi and Montagna which was used in Geant3.21. In total, this alone means a speed improvement of roughly 30-40%.
  • Ripple filter has two modes of operation, Monte Carlo type or Modulus type.
  • Logarithmic energy binning in SPC files for TRiP
  • Full howto for generating DDD files for TRiP
  • Now only three input files are needed to setup a run.
  • Improved documentation.
  • Scoring by zones using detect.dat (complementary to Cartesian mesh and cylindrical scoring)
  • Alanine response model included, so SHIELD-HIT12A can directly calculate the dose equivalent response in alanine.
  • Flat circular and square beams can be defined
  • Neutron data for natural Argon was added (needed for detailed simulations of air)
  • Another ton of bug fixes.
Of course SHIELD-HIT12A includes the features from SHIELD-HIT10A (which was never released):
  • Totally new (parallelizable) scoring system:
    • Arbitrary Mesh and Cylindrical scoring
    • Lots of detectors such as energy, fluence, dose-averaged LET, track-averaged LET, average velocity (beta), dose to medium (where medium can be changed if you want to calculate stopping power ratios) etc....
  • finally SHIELD-HIT10A is parallelizable
  • New random number generator, which gives a massive performance boost
  • New adjusted inelastic cross sections for carbon ions based on recent data
  • Fine tuning of the fermi-breakup parameters
  • SHIELD-HIT10A can be configured without accessing the source code anymore, so no programming knowledge required to use SHIELD-HIT10A.
  • SHIELD-HIT10A is installable
  • Runs on linux again, even when compiling with code optimizations, ok with GNU gfortran, Intel and Portland compilers.
  • Many bug fixes
Enjoy! And please drop me a line when you find bugs in the software and errors in the manual, they are there, but we hid them well. :o)



  1. SHIELD_HIT is new for me. I just saw some explanation about it. but, I need more

  2. Thanks for your interest, I recommend you take a look at the introduction in the user's guide. You can find it on
    or use this direct link to the PDF: