Project Chrono is distributed as open source, so the preferred way for installing it is to clone the source code from our GIT repository and to build the libraries by compiling the source code.
Instructions for configuring and building the Chrono libraries are provided on the installation page.
We also provide precompiled binaries if you want skip the build process:
The latest version of the installer features a more stable backend and a GUI for a friendlier user experience. If you have installed Project Chrono from the previous text-based installer, it is recommended to uninstall that version first. This installer will not interfere with manual builds of Project Chrono.
The latest release of Project Chrono is available as a Linux Docker image.
docker pull uwsbel/projectchrono:latest
Or pull a specific version using its release tag, e.g.:
docker pull uwsbel/projectchrono:5.0.1
See the Project Chrono Docker Repository for more information.
A discontinued release of Chrono 3.0.0 for CentOS and RHEL systems is still available at for legacy reasons:
Precompiled Project Chrono 3.0.0 CentOS/RedHat (unsupported).
PyChrono is Chrono for Python. It is a module that can be installed in your Python environment so that you can access the functions of Chrono via the Python language. This can be an easier way to use Chrono because Python is more friendly than C++.
We support installation of PyChrono via the conda installer:
conda install -c projectchrono pychrono
For more details on the installation, refer to the PyChrono installation page.
This optional tool can be installed as an add-in for the SolidWorks 3D CAD, that is widely used by many engineering companies. After you install this add-in, you will find a new exporter tool in the right panel of SolidWorks: this can be used to generate .py files with PyChrono scene descriptions containing masses, constraints, etc.
The installer automatically detects your SolidWorks installation (v.2011, v.2012, v.2013 64bit supported and tested, for the moment) and adds the Chrono add-in.
Chrono::SolidWorks add-in for SolidWorks 2018 and higher. Compatible with Chrono 6.0 and the develop branch of Chrono.
Chrono::SolidWorks 5.0 add-in for SolidWorks 2018 and higher. Compatible with Chrono 5.0.
Chrono::SolidWorks 4.0 add-in for SolidWorks 2014 and higher. Compatible with Chrono 4.0.
In the following we list download links for useful third-party tools and libraries that you might need if you want to build/use Project Chrono. If you plan to build Project Chrono from the source code in the GIT repository, some of them are mandatory (ex. the GIT client, the CMake tool, the compiler, etc.) but if you install the precompiled Project Chrono binaries, most are optional.
A C++ compiler is required in order to build Chrono libraries and demos. Chrono requires a C++11 compliant compiler. The Chrono building process has been tested with Microsoft compilers (required version Visual Studio v.2013 or later), GNU compilers, and Intel compilers.
In case you do not have a C++ compiler already installed on your computer, you can download one of these free tools:
On most distributions, the GNU gcc compiler should be already installed by default. If not, install with:
sudo apt-get install gcc build-essential
(assuming you have Ubuntu)
or download from http://gcc.gnu.org
The initial release of Visual Studio 2015 gives an error when compiling Chrono. Using update 2 of Visual Studio 2015 fixes this problem (download it from this page. )
A GIT client compiler is required in order to build Chrono libraries and demos. The C++ source code of Chrono is hosted on a GIT versioning system. You need a GIT client that allows you to clone and pull the most recent release from GIThub. There are many alternatives, but we suggest SourceTree.
The CMake tool is required in order to in order to build Chrono libraries and demos. CMake is cross-platform and available for many operating systems (choose the one that you need, ex. Windows, Linux, etc.). Download it from this site.
The Irrlicht library is required in order to compile the Chrono demos that use the IRRLICHT module 3D visualization. It is a cross-platform 3D visualization library, based on OpenGL and DirectX. Download it from this site.
The new release v.1.8.2 of Irrlicht is tested to be stable and working well with Chrono.
Release v.1.8.3 does not contain the precompiled 64bit dlls.
Release v.1.8.0 has some issues with soft shadows.
The optional MATLAB module in Chrono provides the support for interoperation with Matlab(TM). If you want to build that unit and to test its demos, you must have the Matlab API installed in your computer: that is distributed in the main Matlab software, so if you already have Matlab installed you are fine. If not, just do not compile and use the MATLAB module in the Chrono project. If you want to buy the Matlab software, go to http://www.mathworks.com.
The optional POSTPROCESSING module in Chrono provides functionality for exporting simulation data in formats that can be rendered by external software. No libraries are needed to build or use this unit; however you may need raytracing software for processing the saved data. Currently, the POVray 3D raytracer is supported and tested. Download it from this site.
The optional POSTPROCESSING module in Chrono provides functionality for exporting simulation data. One of the output file formats is for plotting graphs with the free GNUplot tool. Download it from this site.