In addition to the licensed software provided by Engineering Computing on Waterloo Nexus and Unix the following list of software is available in the department for teaching and research. These are brief descriptions. If you need more information about the software click on the associated hyperlinks. For further information on usage or reference material contact Dennis Herman.


Aspen Custom Modeler

Create custom models of virtually any system described by nonlinear differential and algebraic equations. You can then use instances of these models in Aspen Plus or Aspen Dynamics simulations.

To use Aspen Custom Modeler, log on to your account and click the following: "Start-Programs-ChemEng Applications-AspenTech".

Learn more about Aspen Custom Modeler at Aspen Technology Inc. website.

Aspen Plus Dynamics

An Aspen Technology Inc. product that adds transient modeling (time varying temperature, pressure, flow, etc.) capabilities to a steady state simulation developed in Aspen Plus. You can add your own custom models using Custom Modeler if you do not find the unit operation that you need in the Aspen Plus library. Note that this package does not solve distributed parameter systems ie partial differential equation models and does not solve boundary value problems.

To use Aspen Plus Dynamics, log on to your account and click the following: :Start-Programs-ChemEng Applications-AspenTech".

Learn more about Aspen Plus Dynamics at Aspen Technology Inc. website.

Aspen Plus

This is a chemical process flowsheet simulation, optimization and design package. Aspen provides a complete library of steady state models for a number of unit operations in the chemical process industries including petroleum, petrochemical, gas processing, polymer, mineral processing. It also provides a large physical property and rigorous thermodynamic property library.

To use Aspen logon to your account and click the following: "Start-Programs-ChemEng Applications-AspenTech".

To use Aspen from home, undergraduate students, teaching assitants, faculty and staff can connect to the terminal servers or via Remote Desktop Connection client application software. Graduate students can use remote desktop to connect to their campus workstations from home. 

To download an install Aspen on your self managed computer do the following: 


Windows 10 computer. Linux or Apple users must use or a Windows 10 virtual machine to install and use Aspen.

How to Download and Install 

  1.  Connect to the UW VPN service 

  2.  Use Windows Map a network drive with different credentials to map the file share \\\studentshare

    1.  When prompted for your credentials specify them as Nexus\userid where userid is your Watiam/Nexus ID. 

  3.  Copy/paste the file from that file share to a folder or desktop on your home PC. 

  4.  Right click the file and select Extract all 

  5.  Open the created aspen12 folder and double click installaspen12.1.cmd file to install Aspen 12 and except all defaults.

Notes : This is a large file 6+ GB to download and install. Download times at 100Mbps internet speeds are 20-30 min. Installation times are 10-30 minutes depending on computer performance. 

Learn more about Aspen Plus at Aspen Technology Inc. website.

Control Station

A package for teaching undergraduate process control. It has three major modes of operation namely case studies, custom process and design tools.

Case studies provides experience in hands-on plant operation and control. The processes include level control of a tank, temperature control of a heat exchanger, concentration control of a reactor and purity control of a distillation column. The basic controllers available include P-only, PI, PD and PID controllers. Advanced strategies include cascade, feed forward, decoupling, digital and model predictive control.

Custom process is a block oriented environment that lets you construct a process and controller architecture to your own specifications for a wide range of custom control analyses. The behavior of the process and disturbance dynamics are simulated through transfer functions you specify. You can investigate the benefits and drawbacks of different control architectures, tunings sensitivities, loop performance capabilities, and a host of other issues important to the practitioner.

Design tools is used to fit linear dynamic models to process data. Design tools will use the low order models to compute appropriate controller tuning values. The high order models yield transfer functions for use in custom process or for use when constructing advanced control strategies which employ a model internal to the controller architecture. Because the data can be imported from real operating processes, design tools can solve challenging real-world problems for controller design, analysis and tuning.

To use control station click the Control Station menu item from: "Start-Programs-Chem Eng Applications-ControlStation".


Simple transfer function based response analysis program for teaching process control. Contains tools for frequency response, root locus and discrete systems. In French and English.

To use this program type "DIRA" from the Nexus' Disk Operating System (DOS) prompt.

E-Z Solve

E-Z Solve allows you to:

  • Write virtually any combination Of Differential Equations (ODEs) and algebraic equations, including parameters, user-defined functions, and lookup tables.
  • Create user-definable functions implementing logic and looping structures to be referenced in equation sets.
  • Store multiple equation sets in one file (or session), providing an excellent tool for comparing results from different models.
  • Solve a set of equations for different parameter values and/or initial conditions, and store the results in a set of runs.
  • Perform a sweep of solves varying a parameter or initial condition.· View solution results in a spreadsheet link data grid, or graphically on 2D and 3D graphs.
  • Plot any number and combination of variables and their functions, on 2D and 3D graphs, to produce component-versus-time, phase plane, or any type of user-defined graph.
  • Label graphs with various user-defined markers, text, and lines.
  • Animate solution graphs as functions of time.

To use E-Z Solve click on the start menu item: "Start-Programs-ChemEng Applications-EZ Solve".

General Algebraic Modeling System

DOS based program for solving optimization problems. It is also available on Unix, e.g., CAPE. Problems are formulated using a text editor in GAMS language and can be solved with a variety of solvers. GAMS is capable of solving unconstrained and constrained versions of linear, nonlinear, mixed integer linear and mixed integer nonlinear problems. No results analysis tools are provided.

To use GAMS type "gams" at a unix shell prompt or type "pcgams" from the Nexus DOS prompt.

Visit GAMS website.


Advanced process modelling tool for solving systems of combined algebraic, differential and partial differential equations. gPROMS Model Builder is used for construction and execution of custom models within a graphical user environment. Models can be rigorously validated using sophisticated built-in parameter estimation and model-based data analysis facilities capable of handling multiple steady-state and dynamic experiments simultaneously. gPROMS Objects can be used to embed gPROMS models in MATLAB, Simulink, CAPE-OPEN simulators such as Aspen Plus and PRO/II and CFD packages such as FLUENT. gPROMS is unique in its ability to solve solving very large problems including PDE systems and systems involving complex event handling, e.g., complex startup/shutdown procedures, batch process scheduling, etc., and runs on Windows and Linux 32-bit and 64-bit systems. Virtually any physical properties package can be used within gPROMS models, from the standard multiflash through CAPE-OPEN-compliant packages such as Aspen Properties Plus to the state-of-the-art SAFT-VR for strongly-associating fluids.

Learn more about gPROMS at the Process System Enterprise Ltd. website.

Himmelblau Programs

A collection of Fortran programs from the 5th edition of Himmelblau's Basic Principles and Calculations in Chemical Engineering. Programs include antoine coefficient estimation, steam and saturated water properties and solution of linear and nonlinear equations. To use the programs you can use the Watfor77 interpreter. To do this issue the following commands from the Nexus DOS prompt:

access m: blauprog@chemical

copy m:*.* n:


University of Michigan Modules

This is an interactive computer modules for chemical engineering instruction.

A collection of introductory chemical engineering tutorials from the University of Michigan distributed by Computer Aids for Chemical Engineering (CACHE) Corporation. Each tutorial is based on a game and was developed with a DOS based multimedia authoring package. We currently have the chemical reaction kinetics modules for use in CHE 36 but other module sets are available for material balances, fluids-transport and separation processes.

To use these modules from the Nexus DOS prompt type "CHE036" and you will be presented with a list of modules. Type the module name to start that module.

Chemical reaction kinetics modules


Kinetics challenge 1 - introduction to kinetics


Reactor staging and optimization


Kinetics challenge 2 - stoichiometry and rate laws

COLUMBO CSTR-volume algorithm - a murder mystery
TICTAC Ergun, Arrhenius, and VanUt Hoff equations in isothermal reactor design
ECOLOGY Collection and analysis of rate data - ecological engineering
HETCAT Heterogeneous catalysis
HEATFX-1 Simulation - mole and energy balances in a CSTR
HEATFX-2 Simulation - mole and energy balances in a PFR

Polymath (numerical computation package)

A program from the CACHE Corporation for teaching numerical methods. It has interactive modules for defining, solving and plotting differential, nonlinear algebraic, linear algebraic equations and for performing polynomial, multiple linear and nonlinear regression.

To use control station click the Control Station menu item from: "Start-Programs-Chem Eng Applications-Polymath".

Learn more about Polymath at the CACHE Corporation website.

Screen 3

Program for performing atmospheric pollutant dispersion calculations and graphical analysis. Based on a Fortran program developed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

To use this program click on the screen3 start menu item: "Start-Programs-ChemEng Applications-Screen3".


A statistical analysis package by StatSoft.

To use this package simply click the following: "Start-Programs-ChemEng Applications-Statistica".

Visit StatSoft website.