NEMO 3-D History and Open Source Release

NEMO 3-D was originally developed at the NASA / JPL High Performance Computing Group from 1998-2003. At JPL NEMO 3-D was funded by the NASA HPCC program, JPL, CISM, ONR, and ARDA. NEMO 3-D continues to be developed at Purdue within the Network for Computational Nanotechnology (NCN). Funding and support for the development at Purdue stems form Klimeck's start-up funds, ARO, SRC, CRI, and RCAC. utilizes NEMO 3-D as a simulation to the educational "Quantum Dot Lab". Within that application users can run simulations in a simple effective mass model (single s orbital) within seconds. 3-D rendered wavefunctions, absorption spectra, and energy spectra can be explored interactively.

Early on the NASA HPCC program demanded the release of all developed code to the public. In October 2003 the source was released for the first time as an alpha version on under a GNU Lesser Public License. A variety of problems with the distribution on openchannelsoftware have occurred and the source has not been available at the site sporadically. The code that is at that site has not been updated since its first release in 2003. The lastes source code is released on

NEMO 3-D has gone through continual developments since Dec. 2003 at Purdue University and the source is now available through the NEMO 3-D group. We request that persons interested in NEMO 3-D first review the material on the NEMO 3-D web page to gage if indeed NEMO 3-D can handle their scientific problem. We recommend that the users review the following three papers carefully before they request the source code:

  • "Development of a Nanoelectronic 3-D (NEMO 3-D) Simulator for Multimillion Atom Simulations and Its Application to Alloyed Quantum Dots" (INVITED), Gerhard Klimeck, et al., Computer Modeling in Engineering and Science (CMES) Volume 3, No. 5 pp 601-642 (2002).
  • "Atomistic Simulation of Realistically Sized Nanodevices Using NEMO 3-D: Part I - Models and Benchmarks", and "Atomistic Simulation of Realistically Sized Nanodevices Using NEMO 3-D: Part II - Applications", Gerhard Klimeck, et al. (INVITED) Special Issue on Nanoelectronic Device Modeling in IEEE Transactions on Electron Devices, Vol. 54, Issue 9, Sept. 2007, Page(s):2079 - 2089 (2007). ibid. Page(s):2090 - 2099.

NEMO 3-D is capable to compute the electronic structure within an empirical tight-binding model for quantum dots (3-D confinement), nanowires (2-D confinement), quantum wells (1-D) confinement, and bulk (no confinement) under limited crystal distortions. The strain is computed in a valence force field.

NEMO 3-D cannot simulate:

  • the establishment of bonds,
  • structures subject to strongly distorted bonds (for example very small freestanding quantum dots, and surfaces that reconstruct themselves from bulk connectivities and bulk bond angles),
  • vacancies,
  • and many other physical phenomena that deal with the chemistry of bonds.

We point out here that NEMO 3-D can be a difficult software to be installed on systems that it has not been previously installed on. In particular an older version of the xerces xml parser can be a bear to compile. The Klimeck research group does not have the resources to support each user with the installation of the software. If you create a new build_type for a new platform, we welcome the feedback of this build_type to us so we can distribute it to others. We emphasize here that the 3-D code is truly in a development phase and share with the community to enable joint collaboration on the NEMO 3-D effort. Support of the software is truly minimal at this stage!!!!

Given all the caveats above we decided to restrict the distribution of NEMO 3-D through this Private Group on In order to access this group, you must be approved by Prof. Gerhard Klimeck at Purdue University. As you request access to the group, please indicate your scientific problem interest to possibly engage into a discussion as to whether NEMO 3-D can help your scientific inquiry. Please identify yourself with your name, institution, and nanoHUB login so we can verify that you are authorized to access the code.

The release of NEMO 1-D is a completely different matter and discussed elsewhere.