The Origins of Circuit Simulation Software
The original circuit simulation software, called the Simulation Program with Integrated Circuit Emphasis (SPICE), was developed at the University of California Berkeley in the 1970s. It was released with an open-source license, which explains the numerous versions of SPICE available today. However, not all versions are as open or free as we would like. While LTspice is a popular choice, those seeking a truly free and open-source circuit simulator might be interested in trying out QucsStudio.
Qucs, short for Quite Universal Circuit Simulator, forms the foundation of the circuit simulation software. QucsStudio, on the other hand, provides the graphical user interface (GUI) layer for ease of use. Similar to other popular SPICE programs, QucsStudio supports a wide range of circuit components and models, including semiconductor devices, passive components, and digital logic gates. It also utilizes SPICE-based simulation, allowing for various types of circuit behavior modeling, such as DC, AC, transient, and small-signal analysis.
Availability and Future Developments
Currently, QucsStudio is only available for Windows users. While it is possible to run it under WINE, a compatibility layer for running Windows applications on Unix-like operating systems, it would be ideal to have a Linux version in the future. Nevertheless, there are plenty of other options for those using non-Windows operating systems. If you’re interested, you can check out a review of 30 alternative circuit simulators.
Thanks to [Electroagenda] for the tip!