Astrophysical equilibrium and time-dependent photoinisation and steady supersonic shock spectral emission code

MAPPINGS V is a photoionisation and shock modelling code written in FORTRAN. It allows the compute nebular emission spectra from the far UV-Xrays (~0.1 Å or 100 keV) to the far IR (>1000 μm or 1e-6 eV).

MAPPINGS was originally written by Dopita in 1976 and descrbed in a PhD thesis in 1982 by Binette (ANU) and then by PhD thesis by Sutherland in 1993 (ANU) and a cooling paper in 1993, and Sutherland has curated the code since 1989. The code has evolved since then and useful early references is are Sutherland and Dopita 1993 and Dopita and Sutherland (1996)

  • [Add papers here.]

MAPPINGS This code calculates ionisation and emission for continuum and line fluxes of recombination and collisionally excited lines for all elements from hydrogen to zinc, for over 88,000 lines in the current version.

MAPPINGS began in 1976 as a five-level-atom solver and simple shock model. It has gone through major upgrades since then and is currently at version 5.2.x with 174 multi-level ions and some up to 900 level level ion models with cascades, charge exchange and other processes and full continuum and diffuse field estimation. It produces output for nebula structures as well as emission spectra both as line lists and f-lambda and f-nu energy and wavelength files to compare with observations of line fluxes and entire spectra.

It can be used to model equilibrium and time dependent astrophysical plasmas and emission and is used for atomic diagnostics, cooling, model HII regions, Planetary Nebulae, Nova Shells, AGN emission regions and a wide range of Herbig Haro and fast Shockwaves in the interstellar medium.

Quick Install and Run Instructions

Advanced Install and Run Instructions


The code is is available on Bitbucket and a mirror on a university server for mappings Note: the public branch of the Bitbucket server is encourage and will always be the most recently updated although the univeristy snapshot is taken regularly and lets users without git to get a working copy of the current version as a zip file download with just the full public branch included but not the experimental or development branches.


Issues regarding the code and suggestions for improvement the code regarding the should be reported there. We actively encourage other to make use of the code for their own science. If anyone has questions about whether the code might be useful for a project, we encourage you to contact one of the authors of the code.


If you make use of MAPPINGS in your published research we ask that you reference the following papers

Add a more limited set of Sutherland and Dopita 1993` and Dopita and Sutherland (1995) <>`_


Various documentation exists:

  • A Quick Guide describing how to install and run Python (in a fairly mechanistic fashion).

For more information on how this page was generated and how to create more extensive code level documentation for MAPPINGS, look at the page for documentation on the documentation.


The authors of the MAPPINGS code and their institutions are:

Ralph S Sutherland

Research School of Astronomy & Astrophysics Australian National University

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