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A python package for easily parsing and processing data from MilkyWay@home

Project description


Copyright Tom Donlon, 2020 RPI

github user: thomasdonlon

Requires Python v.>3.2.3

MilkyWay@home is a computational astrophysics project located at RPI and run by Dr. Heidi Newberg. The project contains two main components, (i) the Separation Application and (ii) the N-body Application. I have worked with both, and over a few years have developed several useful bits of python code to supplement analysis and usage of MilkyWay@home. This code has been cleaned and organized here, so that others can benefit from the work I did and not have to spend time rewriting thing's I've already done.

The purpose of the mwahpy package is to provide a collection of useful tools for people working with/on the MilkyWay@home project at RPI. Ideally, the package will contain tools for both Separation and N-body, although that might not initially be the case.

In practice it would be good for this package to be updated along with the MilkyWay@home project and/or python updates after I'm gone. No clue if that's going to happen, but I plan on maintaining support at least through the spring of 2022 (while I'm in graduate school).

Issues with the package can be directed to my github profile or on the MilkyWay@home forums at Improvements or additions are welcome, just send a pull request to the mwahpy github repository.



  1. Open your terminal, and run

python3 -m pip install mwahpy

  1. Insert import statements for the subpackages that you want to use in your .py files:

import mwahpy.{mwahpy subpackage}

import mwahpy.{other mwahpy subpackage}


  1. Do science


  1. Download the mwahpy github repository

  2. Place the files in the repository in your sys-path directory (this can be found by running "python3 -m site" in your terminal and is given after "USER-SITE") (also see

  3. Insert import statements for the subpackages that you want to use:

import mwahpy.{mwahpy subpackage}

import mwahpy.{other mwahpy subpackage}


in your code

  1. Do science


  1. Download the mwahpy github repository

  2. At the beginning of your .py file, put the path to the /mwahpy/mwahpy directory, and then import the relevant mwahpy .py files that you need to access

sys.path.insert(1, '.../mwahpy/mwahpy')

import {mwahpy subpackage}

import {other mwahpy subpackage}


  1. Do science


A non-exhaustive list of contents of the package is given below:

  • easy importing of data from N-body output
  • easy manipulation of data after reading in
  • A variety of coordinate transformations for typical coordinate systems used in Galactic astronomy
  • easy visualization of the imported data through plotting functionality


  • Finish refactoring
  • Finish unit testing of coordinate transformations
  • Refactor and polish
  • Write API

Project details

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Files for mwahpy, version 1.2.2
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