NAMD, recipient of a 2002 Gordon Bell Award and a 2012 Sidney Fernbach Award, is a parallel molecular dynamics code designed for high-performance simulation of large biomolecular systems. Based on Charm++ parallel objects, NAMD scales to hundreds of cores for typical simulations and beyond 500,000 cores for the largest simulations. NAMD uses the popular molecular graphics program VMD for simulation setup and trajectory analysis, but is also file-compatible with AMBER, CHARMM, and X-PLOR. NAMD is distributed free of charge with source code. You can build NAMD yourself or download binaries for a wide variety of platforms. Our tutorials show you how to use NAMD and VMD for biomolecular modeling.

Want to make NAMD and VMD better? Join our team! We are hiring for research programmer and senior research programmer positions. Apply by February 23.

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Other Spotlights 

Spotlight: Complete Polio Virus Simulated (March 2013)

cutaway representation of a complete polio virus

image size: 431.6KB
made with VMD by Jason Roberts
see also movie

While a global campaign to eradicate polio has resulted in only 212 cases reported worldwide in 2012, there is a continuing risk of vaccine-resistant strains emerging. In addition, as one of the most studied viruses of all time, polio makes an excellent model for understanding similar diseases. Researchers at the Victorian Infectious Diseases Reference Laboratory have reconstructed and simulated a complete polio virus, including both the genomic payload RNA core and its surrounding protein capsid. The polio virus model is being used as a basis for understanding antiviral drugs, virus infection, and to learn how to model related viruses such as Enterovirus 71. The model was constructed in VMD and simulations of 3.7 million atoms were performed using NAMD on the BlueGene/Q supercomputer at the Victorian Life Sciences Computation Initiative. Rhombicdodecahedral periodic boundary conditions were used to reduce the volume of water needed to solvate the virus, and the symmetry of the virus capsid was exploited to study an antiviral drug binding at 60 identical locations simultaneously, avoiding artifacts that could have arisen from a truncated structure. See the researchers' poliovirus simulation website for a movie and additional information.


Why NAMD? (in pictures)
How to Cite NAMD
Features and Capabilities
Performance Benchmarks
Publications and Citations
Credits and Development Team


Read the License
Download NAMD Binaries (also VMD)
Build from Source Code - Git access now available
Run at NCSA, SDSC, NICS, or Texas


NAMD Developer Workshop in Urbana (June 11-12, 2018)
    Apply by May 4.
Charm++ Workshop in Urbana (April 11-12, 2018)
"Hands-On" QM/MM Simulation Workshop (April 5-7, 2018)
    Held in Urbana. Apply by March 3.
Enhanced Sampling and Free-Energy Workshop (Sept 25-29, 2017)
"Hands-On" Workshop in Pittsburgh (May 30-June 2, 2017)
NAMD Developer Workshop in Chicago (May 22-23, 2017)
Charm++ Workshop in Urbana (April 17-19, 2017)
"Hands-On" Workshop in Urbana (April 17-21, 2017)
PRACE School on HPC for Life Sciences (April 10-13, 2017)
Older "Hands-On" Workshops


Having Problems with NAMD?

NAMD Wiki (Recent Changes)
NAMD-L Mailing List (Archive)
Tutorial-L Mailing List (Archive)

Mailing List Issues for Addresses


Research Programmer Position
    Apply by Feb 23.
NAMD 2.13 New Features
One-click NAMD/VMD in the cloud
QM/MM Interface to MOPAC and ORCA
QwikMD GUI Released in VMD 1.9.3
NAMD 2.12 New Features
NAMD 2.12 Release (Dec 2016)
2016 User Survey Report
Previous Announcements


NAMD 2.12 User's Guide
  (also 773k HTML or 1.1M PDF)
NAMD 2.12 Release Notes
Running Charm++ Programs (including NAMD)
Running GPU-Accelerated NAMD (from NVIDIA)
Introductory NAMD Tutorials
All NAMD & VMD Tutorials

Related Codes, Scripts, and Examples
NAMD Wiki (Recent Changes)
Older Documentation


Early Science Project on First US Exascale Machine
Opening New Frontiers in the Battle Against HIV/AIDS
HIV Capsid Interacting with Environment
Assembling Life's Molecular Motor
Membrane Channel Made of DNA Origami
NAMD Paper Has 6000 Citations
Antibiotic Resistance Through Efflux Pumps
Membrane Protein Breakthrough
Massive Flu Virus Simulations
Ion Channels in General Anesthesia
How HIV Defeats Cellular Defender
Older News Items