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The illustris simulation: Public data release

Nelson, D. and Pillepich, A. and Genel, S. and Vogelsberger, M. and Springel, V. and Torrey, P. and Rodriguez-Gomez, V. and Sijacki, D. and Snyder, G. F. and Griffen, B. and Marinacci, F. and Blecha, L. and Sales, L. and Xu, D. and Hernquist, L. (2015) The illustris simulation: Public data release. Astronomy and Computing, 13 . pp. 12-37. ISSN 2213-1337.

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We present the full public release of all data from the Illustris simulation project. Illustris is a suite of large volume, cosmological hydrodynamical simulations run with the moving-mesh code AREPO and including a comprehensive set of physical models critical for following the formation and evolution of galaxies across cosmic time. Each simulates a volume of (106.5 Mpc)^3 and self-consistently evolves five different types of resolution elements from a starting redshift of z=127 to the present day, z=0. These components are: dark matter particles, gas cells, passive gas tracers, stars and stellar wind particles, and supermassive black holes. This data release includes the snapshots at all 136 available redshifts, halo and subhalo catalogs at each snapshot, and two distinct merger trees. Six primary realizations of the Illustris volume are released, including the flagship Illustris-1 run. These include three resolution levels with the fiducial “full” baryonic physics model, and a dark matter only analog for each. In addition, we provide four distinct, high time resolution, smaller volume “subboxes”. The total data volume is ∼265 TB, including ∼800 full volume snapshots and ∼30,000 subbox snapshots. We describe the released data products as well as tools we have developed for their analysis. All data may be directly downloaded in its native HDF5 format. Additionally, we release a comprehensive, web-based API which allows programmatic access to search and data processing tasks. In both cases we provide example scripts and a getting-started guide in several languages: currently, IDL, Python, and Matlab. This paper addresses scientific issues relevant for the interpretation of the simulations, serves as a pointer to published and on-line documentation of the project, describes planned future additional data releases, and discusses technical aspects of the release.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Pillepich, A.0000-0003-1065-9274
Genel, S.0000-0002-3185-1540
Vogelsberger, M.0000-0001-8593-7692
Springel, V.0000-0001-5976-4599
Torrey, P.0000-0002-5653-0786
Rodriguez-Gomez, V.0000-0002-9495-0079
Marinacci, F.0000-0003-3816-7028
Blecha, L.0000-0002-2183-1087
Hernquist, L.0000-0001-6950-1629
Additional Information:© 2015 Elsevier B.V. Received 6 April 2015, Accepted 18 September 2015, Available online 30 September 2015. DN would like to thank Research Computing and the Odyssey cluster at Harvard University for significant computational resources. AP acknowledges support from the HST grant HST-AR-13897. SG acknowledges support provided by NASA through Hubble Fellowship grant HST-HF2-51341 001-A awarded by the STScI, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., for NASA, under contract NAS5-26555. VS acknowledges support by the European Research Council under ERC-StG grant EXAGAL-308037, and by the DFG Priority Program SPPEXA through project EXA-MAG. PT acknowledges support from NASA ATP Grant NNX14AH35G. GS acknowledges support from HST grants HST-AR-12856.01-A and HST-AR-13887.004-A. Funding for HST programs #12856 and #13887 is provided by NASA through grants from STScI. LB acknowledges support provided by NASA through Einstein Fellowship grant PF2-130093. LH acknowledges support from NASA grant NNX12AC67G and NSF grant AST-1312095. The authors would like to thank many people for contributing to analysis and understanding of the Illustris simulations and their results: Andreas Bauer, Simeon Bird, Akos Bogdan, Aaron Bray, Eddie Chua, Benjamin Cook, Chris Hayward, Rahul Kannan, Luke Kelley, Cristina Popa, Kevin Schaal, Martin Sparre, Joshua Suresh, Sarah Wellons. The Illustris-1 simulation was run on the CURIE supercomputer at CEA/France as part of PRACE project RA0844, and the SuperMUC computer at the Leibniz Computing Centre, Germany, as part of GCS-project pr85je. The further simulations were run on the Harvard Odyssey and CfA/ITC clusters, the Ranger and Stampede super-computers at the Texas Advanced Computing Center through XSEDE, and the Kraken supercomputer at Oak Rridge National Laboratory through XSEDE.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NASA Hubble FellowshipHST-HF2-51341 001-A
European Research Council (ERC)EXAGAL-308037
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)UNSPECIFIED
NASA Einstein FellowshipPF2-130093
Subject Keywords:Methods: data analysis; Methods: numerical; Galaxies: formation; Galaxies: evolution; Data management systems; Data access methods
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20160311-094308005
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:D. Nelson, A. Pillepich, S. Genel, M. Vogelsberger, V. Springel, P. Torrey, V. Rodriguez-Gomez, D. Sijacki, G.F. Snyder, B. Griffen, F. Marinacci, L. Blecha, L. Sales, D. Xu, L. Hernquist, The illustris simulation: Public data release, Astronomy and Computing, Volume 13, November 2015, Pages 12-37, ISSN 2213-1337, (
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:65298
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:11 Mar 2016 22:17
Last Modified:09 Mar 2020 13:19

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