Spacar 2015 - Software download & install

The SPACAR files are stored in ZIP-archives or, in Microsoft Windows 7/8, a compressed folder. In Windows 7/8 you can easily open such archives, but of course you may chose to use your favourite unzipper.

The ZIP-archive includes all files that are needed to run Spacar with Matlab/Simulink.

You may also download the ZIP-archives and with the files that are used to run the examples in the manual and in the tutorial for prototype modelling, respectively.

If the software doesn't run after you followed the installation instructions below, then a likely cause is a missing library. Chech the hints at the bottom of this page!


First of all, you should create a folder e.g. C:\Matlab\toolbox\spacar. Next, you extract the files from the SPACAR ZIP-archive into this folder. There are three types of files:

  • Files with the extension .mexw32 or .mexw64 are the actual executables of the SPACAR package. The original SPACAR-code (not provided) is written in C, C++ and Fortran77, compiled and linked into so-called MEX-modules, that are executables for use within the Matlab-environment. The following files (and their mexw32 versions) must exist: checksbf.mexw64, combsbd.mexw64, getfrsbf.mexw64, loadsbd.mexw64, loadsbm.mexw64, ltv.mexw64, mrltv.mexw64, repinsbf.mexw64, spacar.mexw64, spacntrl.mexw64, spasim.mexw64.
  • Files with extension .M are the Matlab-files necessary to use the SPACAR program. The following files must exist: getss.m, spadraw.m, spavisual.m, stressbeam.m and a lot of private\*.p files. 
    Other M-files provide help text for the MEX-modules. These files are: checksbf.m, combsbd.m, getfrsbf.m, loadsbd.m, loadsbm.m, ltv.m, mrltv.m, repinsbf.m, spacar.m, spacntrl.m, spasim.m.
  • Files with extension .MDL are Simulink models. There is only one file which is actually a library from which the SPACAR modules for use in Simulink can be copied: spacar_lib.mdl.

The (optional) data files can be extracted in a separate working folder.
The files in the SPACAR folder should be in the Matlab path when Matlab is running. There are two ways to accomplish this:

  • The best practice is to change the settings of the Matlab environment by adding the SPACAR folder to the Matlab path. This modification is either temporary or permanent. The path can be modified from the pulldown menus with File|Set Path, or by using the Matlab commands PATH or ADDPATH.
  • Alternatively, if you are not allowed to modify the Matlab settings or you want to run Spacar just once, you can make sure that the SPACAR folder is the local folder. You can verify this by typing PWD. If necessary, change your local folder by typing cd C:\Matlab\toolbox\spacar or whatever folder you have chosen to store your files.

In case you are upgrading from an older version of SPACAR you better (re)move all old files before installing the new ones as there may be some incompatibilities between the current version and older releases.


The freely downloadable student version has a time limited license that may only be used until October 1, 2018.


In combination with 64-bit Matlab versions you may get error about an mex-file that can't run. A possibly cause is that your computer doesn't have the "Microsoft Visual C++ 2010 Redistributable Package (x64)". It is available from the Official Microsoft Download Center.

A similar prerequisite applies to the 32-bit version.