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Monte Carlo generators in ATLAS software

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This document describes how Monte Carlo (MC) generators can be used in the ATLAS software framework (Athena). The framework is written in C++ using Python scripts for job configuration. Monte Carlo generators that provide the four-vectors describing the results of LHC collisions are written in general by third parties and are not part of Athena. These libraries are linked from the LCG Generator Services (GENSER) distribution. Generators are run from within Athena and the generated event output is put into a transient store, in HepMC format, using StoreGate. A common interface, implemented via inheritance of a GeneratorModule class, guarantees common functionality for the basic generation steps. The generator information can be accessed and manipulated by helper packages like TruthHelper. The ATLAS detector simulation as well access the truth information from StoreGate1. Steering is done through specific interfaces to allow for flexible configuration using ATLAS Python scripts. Interfaces to most general purpose generators, including: Pythia6, Pythia8, Herwig, Herwig++ and Sherpa are provided, as well as to more specialized packages, for example Phojet and Cascade. A second type of interface exist for the so called Matrix Element generators that only generate the particles produced in the hard scattering process and write events in the Les Houches event format. A generic interface to pass these events to Pythia6 and Herwig for parton showering and hadronisation has been written. © 2010 IOP Publishing Ltd.

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