As the millennium drew to a close, many physicists were becoming increasingly excited about the convergence of physics and computer science. Computation was greatly accelerating progress in the field, and Dr. John R. Cary, a professor at the University of Colorado, along with his colleague, Dr. Svetlana Shasharina, saw the merging of the two fields as an opportunity to apply their research to solve real-world problems. Together, they founded Tech-X Corporation in Boulder, Colorado in 1994.

The Need for Scalability

In the early years, Tech-X used object oriented programming to create codes that described particle tracking. Though successful, the Tech-X team realized their ideas could be used to make more complex codes scalable, i.e., be able to make effective use of large numbers of computer processors. Without scalability, the codes would be limited in their applicability, and unable to tackle the larger problems being researched in the field of plasma and beam physics.

Greenfield Implementation Approach Leads to VORPAL

Taking a “greenfield implementation” approach, which requires building code completely from scratch, they began work on a new code, which would later be known as VORPAL. The first paper describing VORPAL was published in the Journal of Computational Physics in 2004. A second paper that used VORPAL to explain laser-plasma interactions was featured on the cover of Nature that same year – a huge accomplishment to any scientist. Combined, these two papers have been cited nearly 3000 times since 2004, as numerous other scientific entities have chosen to use the VORPAL code in their research.

The Launch of VSim

In 2010, in response to growing consumer demand for more user-friendly software, VSim was created. VSim took the powerful VORPAL physics engine and combined it with the VSimComposer graphical-user-interface, allowing users to create physics simulations without the need for manual programming. It was also around this time that customizable “packages” were created for VSim so that users can customize the exact capabilities needed for their work.

USim and RSim

As global sales of VSim grew, Tech-X observed a need for additional products outside of the VSim framework. In 2013 the first version of USim, a charged, multi-fluids simulation application, was sold to consumers. Most recently, Tech-X has released RSim, a product that grew out of a Tech-X collaboration with NASA’s Orion mission. Used to simulate radiation transport, RSim is a user-friendly simulation product with applications from nuclear medicine to astronaut shielding.

Our Mission

From its early beginnings in a home in Boulder, Colorado, Tech-X has grown into a premier simulation software provider, whose products are used by engineers and scientists across industries and specialties. Tech-X software products can now be found around the world, where they continue to empower innovation, and discover real-world solutions to complex problems.