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Circle packing algorithm for Python

Project description

Pure Python implementation of circle packing layout algorithm.

Circles are first arranged via a version of A1.0 by Huang et al (see for details) and then enclosed in a circle created around them using Matoušek-Sharir-Welzl algorithm used in d3js (see,, and


Compatible with Python 2.7 and Python 3.2+.

Using pip:

pip install circlify

or using the source:

git clone git://
cd circlify
python install

The last step may require sudo if you don’t have root access. The script uses setuptools/distribute.


The main function circlify is supported by a small data class circlify.Circle and takes 3 parameters:

  • A list of positive values sorted from largest to smallest.
  • (optional) A target enclosure where the packed circles should fit. It defaults to the unit circle (0, 0, 1).
  • (optional) A boolean indicating if the target enclosure should be appended to the output.

The function returns a list of circlify.Circle objects, each one corresponding to the coordinates and radius of cirlces proportional to the corresponding input value.


import circlify as circ

data = [19, 17, 13, 11, 7, 5, 3, 2, 1]
circles = circ.circlify(, with_enclosure=True)

The variable circles contains (last one is the enclosure):

[circ.Circle(x=0.35776879346704843, y=-0.13064957525245907, r=0.39529216048201216),
 circ.Circle(x=-0.411432317820337, y=-0.13064957525245907, r=0.3739089508053733),
 circ.Circle(x=-0.04661299415374866, y=0.4678014425767657, r=0.32697389223002427),
 circ.Circle(x=-0.045884607890591435, y=-0.6977206243364218, r=0.3007722353441051),
 circ.Circle(x=-0.6132109517981927, y=0.4490810687795324, r=0.23993324126007678),
 circ.Circle(x=0.48296614887228806, y=0.4541723195782383, r=0.20278059970175755),
 circ.Circle(x=0.3252787490004198, y=0.7776370388468007, r=0.15707317711577193),
 circ.Circle(x=-0.40283175658099674, y=0.7512387781681531, r=0.12824971207048294),
 circ.Circle(x=0.09222041925800777, y=0.8617116738294696, r=0.09068624109026069),
 circ.Circle(x=0.0, y=0.0, r=1.0)]

A simple matplotlib representation. See circlify.bubbles helper function:

visualization of circlify circle packing of first 9 prime numbers.

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