SPECTRA: a synchrotron radiation calculation code

Welcome to SPECTRA home page

2015/11/14: Version 10.0.7 has been released.

What is SPECTRA?

SPECTRA is an application software to calculate optical properties of synchrotron radiation emitted from bending magnets, wigglers (conventional and elliptical) and undulators (conventional, helical, elliptical and figure-8). Calculations of radiation from an arbitrary magnetic field distribution are also available. Parameters on the electron beam and the source can be edited completely on graphical user interfaces (GUIs) and it is possible to show the calculation result graphically. The energy spectrum and radiation power after transmitting various filters and convolution of detector's resolution are also available.

Request from the Author

If the users are presenting or publishing their results using SPECTRA, they are kindly requested to cite the related reference: T. Tanaka and H. Kitamura, "SPECTRA: a synchrotron radiation calculation code." Journal of Synchrotron Radiation 8, 1221–1228 (2001)

Supported Operating Systems

The graphical part of SPECTRA is written in the C++ language with wxWidgets GUI tool kit and OpenGL graphic library. Thanks to portability of these libraries, SPECTRA will run on most available operating systems such as Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, and most unix-like operating systems.

Important Notes on Brilliance Calculation

In version 10.0, rigorous estimation of brilliance based on the Wigner function method has become available (Phys. Rev. ST-AB, 17 (2014) 060702), in contrast to that based on the traditional way by the Gaussian approximation. Although the brilliance estimation by the Gaussian approximation is still available for campatiblity with the older versions, it is referred to as GA.Brilliance (Gaussian-Approximated) and is distinguished from the rigorous estimation.

Functions supported

At present, the main functions supported in SPECTRA are as follows:

GUI for Pre and Postprocessor

SPECTRA is equipped with a full graphical user interface to help the user to input and edit parameters necessary for SR calculation, and to visualize the results of calculation. Examples of the preprocessors are shown below.

Contact Information


Takashi Tanaka, RIKEN SPring-8 Center


Koto 1-1-1, Sayo, Hyogo 679-5148, Japan
Tel: +81-791-58-2809, Fax: +81-791-58-2810
e-mail: ztanaka@spring8.or.jp