Skip to content



Build status Conda Downloads License Paper


BioSimSpace is now supported and maintained by OpenBioSim and is available through their GitHub organisation. This repository will only be maintained for legacy development work, with bug-fixes back-ported periodically. Developers can update their remote to point to the new location.


BioSimSpace is an interoperable Python framework for biomolecular simulation. With it you can:

  • Write robust and portable biomolecular workflow components that work on different hardware, with different software packages, and that can be run in different ways, e.g. command-line, Jupyter.
  • Interact with molecular-simulation processes in real time.

Citation DOI for Citing BioSimSpace

If you use BioSimSpace in any scientific software, please cite the following paper:

  doi = {10.21105/joss.01831},
  url = {},
  year = {2019},
  publisher = {The Open Journal},
  volume = {4},
  number = {43},
  pages = {1831},
  author = {Lester Hedges and Antonia Mey and Charles Laughton and Francesco Gervasio and Adrian Mulholland and Christopher Woods and Julien Michel},
  title = {BioSimSpace: An interoperable Python framework for biomolecular simulation},
  journal = {Journal of Open Source Software}


Full documentation can be found here.


Conda package

The easiest way to install BioSimSpace is using our conda channel. BioSimSpace is built using dependencies from conda-forge, so please ensure that the channel takes strict priority. We recommend using Mambaforge.

To create a new environment:

mamba create -n openbiosim -c conda-forge -c openbiosim biosimspace
mamba activate openbiosim

To install the latest development version you can use:

mamba create -n openbiosim-dev -c conda-forge -c openbiosim/label/dev biosimspace
mamba activate openbiosim-dev

When updating the development version it is generally advised to update Sire at the same time:

mamba update -c conda-forge -c openbiosim/label/dev biosimspace sire

Unless you add the required channels to your Conda configuration, then you'll need to add them when updating, e.g., for the development package:

mamba update -c conda-forge -c openbiosim/label/dev biosimspace

Installing from source

Alternatively, to install BioSimSpace from source:

(Before starting, you'll need a working Git installation.)

BioSimSpace is built on top of the Sire molecular simulation framework. To download and install Sire, follow the instructions here, making sure that BioSimSpace's dependencies are installed into the Sire conda environment at the point at which Sire is installed.

Next you will need to download BioSimSpace and install it into your Sire Conda environment.

git clone
cd biosimspace/python
python install

Once finished, you can test the installation by running:


Then try importing the BioSimSpace package:

import BioSimSpace as BSS


Please follow the developer's guide.


Please report bugs and other issues using the GitHub issue tracker. When reporting issues please try to include a minimal code snippet that reproduces the problem. Additional files can be also be uploaded as an archive, e.g. a zip file. Please also report the branch on which you are experiencing the issue, along with the BioSimSpace version number. This can be found by running:

import BioSimSpace as BSS