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42 of the Best Free Linux Scientific Software

42 of the Best Free Linux Scientific Software

Science is the effort of trying to understand how the physical world works. From observation and experimentation, science uses physical evidence of natural phenomena to compile data and analyze the collated information. Science really prospers and advances when individuals share the results of their experiments with others in the scientific community. There is a certain logic that scientific software should therefore be released in a freely distributable environment.

To provide an insight into the quality of software that is available, we have compiled a list of 42 high quality Linux scientific applications, covering a broad spectrum of uses. There's a mix of graphical and console based applications included. Hopefully, there will be something of interest for all types of users.

Now, let's explore the 42 scientific applications at hand. For each title we have compiled its own portal page, providing a screenshot of the software in action (where appropriate), a full description with an in-depth analysis of its features, together with links to relevant resources and reviews.

General Mathematics
FreeMat Rapid engineering and scientific prototyping and data processing
K3DSurf Visualize and manipulate multidimensional surfaces
Octave High-level language, primarily intended for numerical computations
Scilab Numerical computational package
Computer Algebra systems
Axiom For research and development of mathematical algorithms
Mathomatic Fast and easy-to-use console mode Computer Algebra System
Maxima System for the manipulation of symbolic and numerical expressions
PARI/GP Designed for fast computations in number theory
Sage Integrates an included distribution of specialized mathematics software
Statistical Analysis
PSPP Free replacement of the proprietary program, SPSS
R Environment for statistical computing and graphics
Plotting
Gnuplot Command-driven interactive function plotting program
QtiPlot Fully fledged plotting software
Biology
EMBOSS
The European Molecular Biology Open Software Suite
GROMACS
Molecular dynamics simulator, with building and analysis tools
VMD
Displays, animates, and analyzes large biomolecular systems
Chemistry
Avogadro Advanced molecular editor
Gabedit Graphical user interface to computational chemistry packages
GAMESS General ab initio quantum chemistry package
MOSCITO Performs molecular dynamics simulations of rigid and/or flexible molecules
MPQC Computes the properties of molecules, ab initio
Open Babel Converts and manipulates chemical data files
PyMOL OpenGL molecular graphics system written in Python
Physics
CompHEP Automatic computations in High Energy Physics
Gerris Flow Solver Tool for generic numerical simulations of flows
Octopus Real-space, real-time implementation of TDDFT
OpenFOAM Facilitates the numerical solution of partial differential equations
ROOT Solves the data analysis challenges of high-energy physics
Astronomy
Celestia Real-time space simulation
KStars Desktop planetarium for KDE
Skychart Prepare different sky maps for a particular observation
Stellarium A virtual planetarium
Electronic & Engineering
Elmer Multiphysical simulation software
Qucs Integrated circuit simulator
Geographic Information Systems
GRASS Geographic Resources Analysis Support System
Quantum GIS Create, visualise, query and analyse geospatial data
SAGA Analysis of spatial data
uDig Spatial data viewer/editor
Econometrics
gretl Regression, Econometric and Time-Series Library
Typesetting
Kile User-friendly LaTeX source editor and TeX shell and KDE
LyX Advanced open source document processor
TeXmacs WYSIWYW scientific word processor

Return to our complete collection of Group Tests, identifying the finest Linux software.

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Last Updated Saturday, May 23 2015 @ 12:27 PM EDT


We have written a range of guides highlighting excellent free books for popular programming languages. Check out the following guides: C, C++, C#, Java, JavaScript, CoffeeScript, HTML, Python, Ruby, Perl, Haskell, PHP, Lisp, R, Prolog, Scala, Scheme, Forth, SQL, Node.js (new), Fortran (new), Erlang (new), Pascal (new), and Ada (new).


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