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Basic data

developer The MathWorks
Current  version 9.8 (R2020a)
(March 19, 2020)
operating system Linux , Unix , Windows , macOS
category Math , simulation
License proprietary
German speaking No

Simulink is software from The MathWorks for modeling (technical, physical, financial mathematical, ...) systems. Simulink is an add-on product to MATLAB and requires it to run.

Modeling and functioning

Simulink enables hierarchical modeling with the help of graphic blocks. Simulink provides a principle of continuous and discrete switching blocks. Additional, more complex circuit blocks can be obtained from The MathWorks or other manufacturers.

In addition, your own code can be integrated into the model using so-called S functions. The integration of MATLAB code is also possible using Embedded MATLAB .

The flow of data between the blocks is implemented graphically using connecting lines (so-called directed graph). A system created in this way can then be simulated within Simulink. Various solver methods are available for numerical simulation .

With the help of suitable toolboxes, it is possible to generate finished code ( C and VHDL ) for microprocessors, computers and FPGAs from Matlab / Simulink .

Simulink supports all integer, floating and fixed point types (float and fixed point) in simulation and code generation, whereby an additional toolbox license is required for (scaled) fixed point types.



Simulink can be expanded with so-called block sets (e.g. the "DSP block set"), many of which are offered by Mathworks itself as well as by many other companies.

Physical modeling

For individual domains such as mechanical, electrical or hydraulic systems, special additions are available that further simplify the modeling of physical systems. To this end, the concept of unidirectional signal connections has been expanded to include bidirectional logical connections - so-called physical networks . The basis of this technology is called Simscape , in which own domains can be defined or existing domains can be expanded using the Simscape language .

Controller design

The controller structures that are modeled and simulated in Simulink are designed using the Simulink Control Design toolbox , which makes linear control theory usable for Simulink.

A numeric parameter optimization with the Toolbox Simulink Design Optimization performed.

Code generation

With the help of the Simulink Coder toolbox, program code can be generated from a Simulink model that can be adapted with configuration files for different target languages. If the generated code is to run on target hardware without a mathematical coprocessor, as is often the case with embedded systems , the additional toolbox Embedded Coder can be used, which enables the generation of fixed-point algorithms.

Another so-called toolbox is the Simulink HDL coder , which can be used to convert a Simulink model into VHDL or Verilog code. The generated code can then, with the help of one of the FPGA - manufacturers synthesis tool supplied, synthesized and transferred to the appropriate hardware. Instead of executable code, the end product is then a piece of hardware with the corresponding functions ( ASIC ) or a hardware description for an FPGA.

If FPGAs are used, parts of the simulation can be compiled and simulated on the hardware at very high speed, which reduces the execution time by orders of magnitude.

Verification and validation

The Verification and Validation toolbox can link a Simulink model with requirements and measure the test coverage of models during simulation according to various criteria. This measurement correlates with that of the generated code, but is not identical.

The Design Verifier is another toolbox that carries out formal verification of models and automatic test case generation .


  • Anne Angermann, Michael Beuschel, Martin Rau, Ulrich Wohlfarth: Matlab - Simulink - Stateflow . 6th edition. Oldenbourg, Munich 2009, ISBN 978-3-486-58985-6 ( ).
  • Josef Hoffmann: Matlab and Simulink: Example-oriented introduction to the simulation of dynamic systems . Addison-Wesley, 1998, ISBN 3-8273-1077-6
  • Frieder Grupp, Florian Grupp: Simulink for engineers . Oldenbourg Wissenschaftsverlag, 2007, ISBN 978-3-486-58091-4

Web links