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NWChem: Open Source High-Performance Computational Chemistry


NWChem aims to provide its users with computational chemistry tools that are scalable both in their ability to treat large scientific computational chemistry problems efficiently, and in their use of available parallel computing resources from high-performance parallel supercomputers to conventional workstation clusters.

NWChem software can handle

  • Biomolecules, nanostructures, and solid-state
  • From quantum to classical, and all combinations
  • Ground and excited-states
  • Gaussian basis functions or plane-waves
  • Scaling from one to thousands of processors
  • Properties and relativistic effects

NWChem is actively developed by a consortium of developers and maintained by the EMSL located at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) in Washington State. Researchers interested in contributing to NWChem should review the Developers page. The code is distributed as open-source under the terms of the Educational Community License version 2.0 (ECL 2.0).

The NWChem development strategy is focused on providing new and essential scientific capabilities to its users in the areas of kinetics and dynamics of chemical transformations, chemistry at interfaces and in the condensed phase, and enabling innovative and integrated research at EMSL. At the same time continued development is needed to enable NWChem to effectively utilize architectures of tens of petaflops and beyond.

The current version of NWChem is version 6.6 can be downloaded here.

NWChem 6.6 is available for download

EMSL Arrows


Are you just learning NWChem and would like to have an easy way to generate input decks, check your output decks against a large database of calculations, perform simple thermochemistry calculations, calculate the NMR and IR spectra of a modest size molecule, or just try out NWChem before installing it? EMSL Arrows scientific service can help. A Web API to EMSL Arrows is now available for Alpha testing.


For more information see "EMSL_Arrows_-_An_Easier_Way_to_Use_NWChem" and "EMSL Arrows"


Please cite the following reference when publishing results obtained with NWChem:

M. Valiev, E.J. Bylaska, N. Govind, K. Kowalski, T.P. Straatsma, H.J.J. van Dam, D. Wang, J. Nieplocha, E. Apra, T.L. Windus, W.A. de Jong, "NWChem: a comprehensive and scalable open-source solution for large scale molecular simulations" Comput. Phys. Commun. 181, 1477 (2010)