What is freeFEM3D?

FreeFEM3D (aka ff3d) is a 3D solver of partial differential equations (PDE). It is a member of the familly of the freefem programs (see


ff3d, as well as its cousins, is a PDE solver driven by a user-friendly language. It solves many kind of problems such as elasticity, fluids (Stokes and Navier-Stokes) and a lot more. The user has to enter the equation associated with the problem, giving either the PDE in strong formulation or weak (variational) formulation.


ff3d can use either the Finite Elements method (the mesh of the geometry being provided by the user) or a Fictitious Domain like approach where the geometry is described using Constructive Solid Geometry (CSG). This description is done using the POV-Ray language but others such as VRML could be added.


The processing of the results is left to the user. One can use various graphic tools: output in the MEdit mesh format or VTK are supported. The implementation of a Qt-VTK based GUI module is underway.


The goal of ff3d is to provide a good teaching tool and a research toolbox (the code is written in C++ and its design is such that new methods can be easily implemented).

freeFEM3D team

freeFEM3D is developed at Laboratoire Jacques-Louis Lions in the Paris VI University (Pierre et Marie Curie).
Savannah freeFEM3D is now hosted by Savannah.
This provides
  • a new CVS repository (anonymous access is available).
  • 4 mailing lists: a users' place, project announces, developer's corner and cvs changelog archives.
  • Patches manager and bug tracker systems.
freeFEM3D is classified as a non-GNU project. This only means that it is not part of the GNU system. freeFEM3D's licence is GPL

Mailing lists

Four mailing lists have been created for freeFEM3D.


User interest

Getting the sources

Getting tarballs

Tarballs including a nightly release can be downloaded here here.

Using CVS

The sources of the code are stored in a cvs repository at Savannah.

To get them enter the following command Then, to get the latest version of the sources, get inside the ff3d directory and do In this later case, remember that the CVS_RSH variable must be set to ssh!

Developer's corner

To get full informations about freeFEM3D sources, one has to check the project page hosted by Savannah.

One can also browse the source code using the doxygen documentation or download its html tree. This is regenerated every night using the very last developer's version.

Valid HTML 4.01! contact us

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