Energy Particles

This plugin computes the kinetic and total energy summed over all particles of a species for time steps specified.

.cfg file

Only the time steps at which the total kinetic energy of all particles should be specified needs to be set via command line argument.

PIConGPU command line option


--e_energy.period 100

Sets the time step period at which the energy of all electrons in the simulation should be simulated. If set to e.g. 100, the energy is computed for time steps 0, 100, 200, …. The default value is 0, meaning that the plugin does not compute the particle energy.

--<species>_energy.period 42

Same as above, for any other species available.


Use filtered particles. All available filters will be shown with picongpu --help

Memory Complexity






The plugin creates files prefixed with the species’ name and the filter name as postfix, e.g. e_energy_<filterName>.dat for the electron energies and p_energy_<filterName>.dat for proton energies. The file contains a header describing the columns.

#step Ekin_Joule E_Joule
0.0   0.0        0.0

Following the header, each line is the output of one time step. The time step is given as first value. The second value is the kinetic energy of all particles at that time step. And the last value is the total energy (kinetic + rest energy) of all particles at that time step.


The output of this plugin computes a sum over all particles in a very naive implementation. This can lead to significant errors due to the finite precision in floating-point numbers. Do not expect the output to be precise to more than a few percent. Do not expect the output to be deterministic due to the statistical nature of the implemented reduce operation.

Please see this issue for a longer discussion and possible future implementations.

Example Visualization

Python snippet:

import numpy as np

simDir = "path/to/simOutput/"

# Ekin in Joules (see EnergyParticles)
e_sum_ene = np.loadtxt(simDir + "e_energy_all.dat")[:, 0:2]
p_sum_ene = np.loadtxt(simDir + "p_energy_all.dat")[:, 0:2]
C_sum_ene = np.loadtxt(simDir + "C_energy_all.dat")[:, 0:2]
N_sum_ene = np.loadtxt(simDir + "N_energy_all.dat")[:, 0:2]
# Etotal in Joules
fields_sum_ene = np.loadtxt(simDir + "fields_energy.dat")[:, 0:2]

plt.plot(e_sum_ene[:,0], e_sum_ene[:,1], label="e")
plt.plot(p_sum_ene[:,0], p_sum_ene[:,1], label="p")
plt.plot(C_sum_ene[:,0], C_sum_ene[:,1], label="C")
plt.plot(N_sum_ene[:,0], N_sum_ene[:,1], label="N")
plt.plot(fields_sum_ene[:,0], fields_sum_ene[:,1], label="fields")
    e_sum_ene[:,1] + p_sum_ene[:,1] + C_sum_ene[:,1] + N_sum_ene[:,1] + fields_sum_ene[:,1],