Whitepaper On The SimaPro 8 Calculation Engine

To keep up with the increasing size and complexity of LCA databases, we have overhauled the SimaPro calculation engine. Download the whitepaper to read about the new engine and compare the new and old engines.

May 05, 2014

SimaPro 8 – Ready For The LCA databases Of The Future

SimaPro 8 has been equipped with a completely new calculation engine, so our users can benefit from the power of the latest LCA databases with the speed, accuracy and performance that can be expected of modern-day software.

Let’s look at ecoinvent, the world’s most used LCA database, as an example. Its latest version, ecoinvent 3, offers LCA professionals more models, more datasets, and more consistency. As a side-effect, the number of core processes that need to be included in each LCA model using this database increased almost fourfold, and the number of links per process increased from 10 to 31. The old SimaPro calculation engine easily runs into network size limits using ecoinvent 3. Many other database manufacturers are also working on new versions with similar size increases.

Whitepaper On The New Calculation Engine

For SimaPro 8, PRé and ModelIt developed the iterative method of calculating process networks. This approach has many advantages:


  • Decreased memory usage, which allows calculation of models up to 500,000 processes, compared to SimaPro 7’s limit of around 10,000.
  • High precision, providing results with 8-digit accuracy for functions that had 3-4 digit accuracy in SimaPro 7.
  • Good overall performance, with fast calculation times and a database buffer for fast reloading of data.
  • Better error detection, decreasing the chance of obtaining incorrect results without noticing.


For more information about the SimaPro 8 calculation engine, and thorough comparisons of the new and old calculation methods, please download the whitepaper.

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Eric Mieras
'Positive impact makes you meaningful'