Computer simulation of RBS, ERDA, NRA, MEIS and PIGE

by Matej Mayer

Max-Planck-Institut für Plasmaphysik


Computer simulation of RBS, ERDA, NRA and MEIS

by Matej Mayer


SIMNRA is a Microsoft Windows program for the simulation of charged particle energy spectra and gamma-ray yields for ion beam analysis with incident ions from about 100 keV to many MeV.

SIMNRA can be used for the simulation of

Almost 3000 different non-Rutherford, nuclear reactions and PIGE cross-sections for incident protons, deuterons, 3He, 4He and Li-ions are included. SIMNRA can calculate any ion-target combination including incident heavy ions and any geometry including transmission geometry. Arbitrary foils in front of the detector and arbitrary beam windows are possible.

SIMNRA graphical user interface with experimental and simulated spectra and various forms.
SIMNRA graphical user interface, showing an experimental spectrum (red), a simulated spectrum (blue), spectra of individual elements (magenta, green and grey); and forms for defining experimental setup, target composition, and fit parameters.

The cross-section calculator SigmaCalc by A. Gurbich allows calculating cross-section data for non-Rutherford backscattering and nuclear reactions for many ion-target combinations at any angle: This allows unsurpassed accuracy for the simulation of a large number of elastic backscattering and nuclear reaction analysis measurements.

For the scattering of identical particles the quantum-mechanical Mott cross-section can be applied using the included MottCalc program by M. Kokkoris.

The capabilities of the program are fully described in the SIMNRA User's Guide (369 pages, PDF, 4608 KB).

SIMNRA is not free. It is a shareware program, which can be used for a trial period of 30 days without fee. If you want to use SIMNRA after this period, you have to register. See Registration / Pricing for registration and pricing details.

SIMNRA is used at more than 220 laboratories world wide and referenced in more than 1800 publications (November 2020). It is the most popular program for the evaluation of ion beam analysis data since 2007, see Citations.

new Current version: SIMNRA 7.03.

SIMNRA was developed by Matej Mayer at the Max-Planck-Institut für Plasmaphysik, Garching, Germany. More information about the author.

Additional resources