VASE – a process simulator

Vase is an extensible process simulator that can handle both individual and continuous tasks. Examples of individual tasks are customers at a bank, cars on an assembly line, or documents in an office. Examples of continuous tasks are oil in a refinery or water in a river.

A source generates a task. The task moves through the process until it reaches a sink. The path of the task through the process depends on the nature of the task, the modifications which may occur to the task and the connections in the process.

The name Vase is based on an image of the process as a network of pipes and flowers. The pipes allow tasks to flow between flowers. The flowers are event handlers which modify the tasks and control their movement. The arrangement of flowers that define a process is called a vase.

Vase  is designed to make it easy as possible to add specialized flowers ( event handlers ) with their own appearance and behaviour.  Here are screenshots of two models using specialized flowers.

Sample Model: Pellet Dryer


This shows a model of a wood pellet drying plant. It has custom designed flowers which are not available in the open source code.

Sample Model: Fermenter


This shows  the simulation of a fermentation process with Ex situ Butanol Recovery (ESBR) for biobutanol production. The simulation is based on this paper .

The screenshot shows the VASE process model: essentially a fermenter and an adsorber connected with a circulating flow.  In the bottom right is a pop up where the user can enter starting conditions and parameters.  In the background is a graph showing the results of a simulation run, with the sugar, ethanol and butanol concentrations in the fermenter plotted against time.

The ESBR model is under development, currently ( March 2016 ) the adsorber is being implemented.  All the code is open source and is available in the VASE repository.

Sample Model: Stopping Machine

Here is a task orientated simulation of a production line with machines that stop from time to time


The background graph shows the throughput ( green ) and queue size ( red ) for machine_1 plotted against time.

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Conveyor Belt Pulley Design

Raven’s Point contributed to the development of a calculation engine to perform Finite Element Analysis ( FEA ) of conveyor belt pulley designs.  The FEA code was optimized and parallelized so that it ran in a few seconds, numerous consistency and design checks added, and a Bill of Materials and Operations implemented.  The engine is currently in use here.


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cRunWatch GUI report

Added code timing profiler report in a string, so GUI applications can be profiled.  cRunwatch

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Stackoverflow Reputation Milestone

Today I reached 10,000 reputation points on stackoverflow.


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RunWatch Daisy Chain Feature

Added Daisy Chain feature to cRunWatch code profiler.

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GRAPHEX : The Raven’s Point Graph Explorer.


A GUI for the boost graph library.

– Add named vertices.

– Specify pinned, fixed location for vertices

– Add edges connecting vertices

– Arrange vertices in a circle

– Arrange vertices according to their connections.  This uses a modified implementation of the Kamada & Kawai algorithm that can handle pinned vertices and disconnected graphs.

– Arrange vertices manually by dragging with mouse

– Color vertices so no two connected vertices have same color

Complete Feature List

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An open source MODBUS Master/Slave simulator



1. A windows desktop application

2. Coded in C++ using .NET

3. Option to simulate a master or a slave.

4. Option to use ASCII or RTU mode

5. Able to configure serial port number and speed.

6. All slaves are assumed to be on the same port

7. Able to send a read query to a specified station and register block.  Values returned will be decoded and displayed.

8. Able to configure station numbers and register numbers that the slave will simulate.

9. Able to send a write query to a specified station and register with a specified value.

10. Display log of all communications sent and received

Here is the Github repository

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