Ninithi is a free, open-source modeling software developed to visualize and analyze the carbon allotropes used in nanotechnology. Nanotechnology deals with objects which are at nanometer scale and not visible even to powerful optical microscopes. An infinite number of geometries exist and it is not feasible to prepare samples of all of them in the real world. Having a three dimensional visualization of atomic structures in a virtual environment and the capability to plot graphs illustrating their band structure greatly enhances the ability to understand the correlation between material properties and the geometry. Ninithi provides this functionality with attractive 3D images and 2D/3D graph plots features to users. Target group of users are the lecturers, students and scientists who are involved in nanotechnology related work.
What we deliver
Users of ninithi can get the software free and use it to study nano-materials. A help documentation containing instructions to use is provided with the software. Users who need the knowledge on nano-materials can request the resources from us. Some articles on nanotechnology education are available on our web site. Users who want to extend the software can download the source code from the svn. We support such enthusiasts with the required guidelines.
Whom we deliver
Ninithi possesses a graphical user interface which provides a good interactivity for users. 3D environment on the interface provides the functionalities to drag, rotate and zoom the nano-structures. Interactive tools are also provided to change the colors and sizes of atoms and bonds. Therefore users can customize the visualizations and background. Visual tools are also provided with the graph plots.
Why is the project unique?
When considering Sri Lanka, ninithi is the first and only software developed here for nanotechnology. By ninithi, we want to popularize scientific modeling and simulation software development in the country. We have initiated it in FOSS domain so that talented individuals can easily contribute. Considering the world, ninithi is the only software available to visualize all the geometries of carbon allotropes used in nanotechnology and plot the band structures (electrical properties) of carbon nanotubes and graphene. We found only two of products in the international market which has a subset of the features of ninithi. ‘Nanotube modeler’ which is proprietary software which can be used only for visualizing allotropes but does not provide tools to plot electrical properties like ‘Ninithi’. Software is proprietary and neither free nor open source. ‘Carbon nanobands’ at nanoHUB.org is a web tool which provides tools only for nanotubes where ‘Ninithi’ can be used for all the allotropes. ‘Ninithi’ also provides better graphic quality with better customization features than these two software.
With the world shrinking everyday due to the use of internet, ICT has become an integral part of our lives. Classrooms are using online tutorials and internet for teaching. Farmers can access market prices in order to gain a better sale. Lanka Software Foundation’s vision is to position Sri Lanka as a global open source software development hub. The advantages of this our global exposure, recognition at a global level for our developers and the end product the software is free. All this can be achieved from the living with a laptop and internet connection. But tools alone cannot bridge the digital gap; we need to make sure people have access to the proper infrastructure.
K R Ratnam
Lanka Software Foundation
University of Colombo School of Computing UCSC Building Complex, 35 ,Reid A
Colombo, Sri Lanka
URL/Website – www.opensource.lk