The Barnes-Hut Galaxy Simulator

An Introduction to solving large scale N-Body Problems


This article is based on the following publications:

  1. J. Barnes und P. Hut: ''A hierarchical O(N log N) force-calculation algorithm'' in Nature,324(4) Dezember 1986
  2. Jim Demmel '' Fast Hierarchical Methods for the N-body Problem'', Part 1, Applications of Parallel Computers (CS267): Lecture 24, April 11, 1996
  3. Tom Ventimiglia and Kevin Wayne '' Barnes-Hut Galaxy Simulator'', Programming Assignment (Computer Science; COS126), 2003


The C++ source code of the barnes hut galaxy simulator is available for download at GitHub. In order to open the project you will need the NetBeans IDE with C++ Plugin. If you have not already installed Netbeans I recommend using the original installer from Oracle since some Linux distributions will install an incomplete version that is missing vital files. If you can compile the project and create a binary file but are unable to start it from within the IDE you are likely affected (Ubuntu and derivatives).

For compiling the program you will need the development versions of the OpenGL, SDL, SDL_TTF libraries.

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