POLYMATH 6.2 Release Now Includes an Interface to a Limited Version of the DIPPR® Thermophysical Database

by Michael B. Cutlip, University of Connecticut, michael.cutlip@uconn.edu

     Mordechai Shacham, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, shacham@bgu.ac.il

The latest POLYMATH now incorporates a newly developed user interface to a limited version of the DIPPR® Database.  The interface has been under development by POLYMATH Software for over two years.  The Database is a continuing project by the Design Institute of Physical Property Data (DIPPRâ) Project 801 that is an Industry Technology Alliance of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, AIChE®.

The Interface to the Database

The installation file for POLYMATH provides a desktop icon for the DIPPR Database Interface and also lists this program under Polymath Software in Start/All Programs.  Access to the Limited DIPPR Database is also provided directly from the POLYMATH program by selection from the drop-down Program menu as shown below:

The access allows the user to go directly to the Database Interface for selection of the compounds and data that are needed in the current POLYMATH program.

The first operation display of the interface is reproduced below where the creation of a selection list of the desired compounds is created.

Once a list is completed, then the user can select some desired combination of the 34 available constant properties.

In addition, the desired temperature-dependent properties can also be specified.


Consider an example of a list that only contains ethanol where the Critical Temperature and the Liquid Heat Capacity are required in a calculation.

Note that the basic report for the Constant Properties can be viewed.

Also the Basic Report for the Temperature-dependent property(s) can be viewed.

Note that there are three levels of Report that can be selected as desired (Minimal, Basic and Detailed), and the resulting output can be copied in a format for insertion directly into Excel, MATLAB and POLYMATH software.

The resulting Basic Report as copied to the POLYMATH ODE Solver is shown below for the Liquid Heat Capacity of Ethanol

where the details are given as comment in POLYMATH that start with '#'.  The equation is also given in POLYMATH code using the variable name and only the reported significant figures from the DIPPR Database. The SI units are also specified.  Similar coding and information is provided as an option for Excel and MATLAB.

The HTML Help file for this POLYMATH Interface to the DIPPR Database is available by clicking on the following link:


Compounds in the Limited DIPPR Database

The 112 compounds in the current limited database are summarized in the Excel file that is available from the link below:

Limited DIPPR Database Compounds

Educational Benefits of the POLYMATH Interface to the DIPPR Database

  1. Students can easily access and utilize the Limited DIPPR Database using the POLYMATH Interface for problem solving in POLYMATH, Excel and MATLAB.

  2. Students find the value in consistent SI units in one up-to-date and reliable source as they solve problems that utilize the compounds in the Limited DIPPR Database.

  3. Students learn that essential components of a constant property are its value, units, and uncertainty.

  4. Students learn that the components of a temperature property correlation are the correlation equation, parameters with significant figures, units of the temperature and the property, uncertainty of the property value and the range of applicability of the correlation.

  5. Students will learn to value the use of databases such as DIPPR for physical property data needed for real-world problem solving and design calculations.

  6. Instructors can save time in searching for property data when developing problem-solving examples and assignments.

  7. Instructors can assign different problems without the need to provide the property.

Current POLYMATH 6.2 Attributes

POLYMATH is a proven computational system that has been specifically created for educational or professional use. This software executes on  Windows XP, Vista or Win 7.  (It operates on 32-bit or 64-bit systems.)  The various POLYMATH programs allow the user to apply effective numerical analysis techniques during interactive problem solving on personal computers. Results are presented graphically for easy understanding and for incorporation into papers and reports. Students and faculty appreciate the simplicity of the user interface and the efficiency and speed of problem solution.

POLYMATH utilizes a color-coded full-screen editor.  All displays have been optimized for user efficiency.  Also provided with POLYMATH is the UNIQUE capability to automatically export any POLYMATH problem to Excel with a single keypress. Thus problems can be solved completely in POLYMATH or exported to Excel™ for solution. A POLYMATH ODE_Solver Add-In is included for solving ordinary differential equations in Excel. Automatic export to Excel includes all intrinsic functions and logical variables. Ordered equations can also be provided to assist with optional Matlab™ solutions of POLYMATH problems.

More detailed information on POLYMATH can be found on the following link to the HELP file


or can found at the website:


The Educational Version of POLYMATH 6.2 has the following problem-solving capabilities

·         Linear Equations - up to 100 simultaneous equations

·         Nonlinear Equations - up to 30 simultaneous nonlinear equations and 40 additional explicit algebraic equations

·         Differential Equations - up to 30 simultaneous ordinary differential equations and 40 additional explicit algebraic equations

·         Data analysis and Regression - up to 60 variables with up to 301 data points for each, with capabilities for linear, multiple linear, and nonlinear regressions with extensive statistics plus polynomial and spline fitting with interpolation and graphing capabilities

Site License for POLYMATH are Available through CACHE

The current academic site license allows a department to use POLYMATH in all computer labs and to make individual copies available to all faculty, staff and teaching assistants for installation on their own computers.  POLYMATH can also be provided on computer networks that that service the department. Site licenses for Engineering colleges and entire colleges/universities are also available.

The current annual site license costs for POLYMATH departmental  site licenses are $175 for the first year and $125 for each successive year thereafter. CACHE nonmember institution rates are an initial $300 for the first year and a $250 annual fee for subsequent years. These fees cover any updates or new versions.

POLYMATH for subsequent years are distributed in June of each year and that version will execute through September of the following year.  Additional updates throughout the year may be issued.

New Options for Purchase of the Educational Version of POLYMATH 8.2 Purchases

Educational users who desire to install POLYMATH on their own personal computers have some new options.  They may select from various time-of-use options such as 4-months or 12-months as well as unlimited use.  Details are available from the POLYMATH website:   www.polymath-software.com/

Future Prospects

Discussions are underway with DIPPR and AIChE regarding the possibility of an Add-On purchase to the POLYMATH Educational Site License that could provide the entire 2030+ compounds in the DIPPR Intermediate Version of the Evaluated Process Design Database with POLYMATH.

POLYMATH 7.0 is under development, and many new capabilities will be forthcoming.  This version is bring programmed in .NET version 4.


The CACHE Corporation has provided Educational Site Licenses for POLYMATH Numerical Problem Solving Software to academic departments since 1990. A number of textbooks in Chemical Engineering utilize POLYMATH.  Among these are the books on Chemical Reaction Engineering by Fogler, the Basic Principles and Calculations in Chemical Engineering by Himmelblau and Riggs, and Problem Solving in Chemical and Biochemical Engineering by Cutlip and Shacham.

POLYMATH authors, Cutlip and Shacham, were the recipients of the 2010 David Himmelblau Award for Innovations in Computer-Based Chemical Engineering Education from the CAST Division of AIChE for their work on POLYMATH.