Frequently Asked Questions

Importing tamaas module gives a circular import error on Windows

(Similar to this issue) Installing with pip install tamaas does not work on Windows, as binary distributions are only built for Linux. To use Tamaas in Windows, use the Windows subsystem for Linux, then use pip to install Tamaas, or use the provided Docker images.

What are the units in Tamaas?

All quantities in Tamaas are unitless. To choose a consistent set of units, see Units in Tamaas.

Do contact solvers solve for a total force or an average pressure?

Solvers consider that the argument to the solve() method is an average apparent pressure (or average gap in some cases), i.e. the total force divided by the total system area (in the reference configuration). This means that doubling the system size and solving for the same argument to the solver increases the total load by a factor 4 (for a 2D surface).

scons dev fails to install Tamaas with externally-managed-environment error

Pip now refuses refuses to install a package outside of virtual environments (see PEP 668), even with the --user flag on. This encourages the use of virtual environments, either with venv or virtualenv, which works nicely with scons dev.

However, if one really needs an editable installation outside of a virtual environment, the PIPFLAGS option can be used to circumvent pip’s protections (not recommended):

scons dev PIPFLAGS="--user --break-system-packages"


If misused this can break your system’s Python packages. Use virtual environments instead!