COCO - CAPE-OPEN to CAPE-OPEN simulation environment


To change COFE's application preferences, choose Preferences from the Edit menu (or press F2).

General preferences

New files are by default blank files containing only program defaults. You can select a template file that will serve as a starting point when you create a new file. All items in the template file will be present in the new file (flowsheet options, configured thermodynamics, even streams and unit operations, etc...).

Hit Browse to select a template .fsd file that will serve as the basis for new files. To revert back to a blank document, select the Blank option.

By default, COCO will check for updates when COFE is started, if it has not been checked within a week. You can turn off the automatic update checking in the preferences window.

The default time out for out-of-proc OLE clients is 60 seconds. If such an OLE object is invoked and takes longer than this time-out to return control to COFE, a standard OLE "Not Responding" box will pop up. If you are using out-of-process OLE objects (such as OATS) that frequently take more time than the default 60 seconds, configure a larger time-out.

Many dialogs shown by COFE have a check box at the bottom to prevent the same (or similar) message to be shown next time. Clicking the Reset button on the General tab will cause all these messages to show again.

COFE will by default solve its flowsheets in a background thread. This allows for the main thread (that is responsible for user interaction and updating the windows) to continue functioning properly, and allows for continuing to use COFE while a flowsheet is solving. It also allows for solving multiple flowsheets at the same time. To be able to solve in a background thread, COFE saves the document, and reloads it in a different thread. Therefore, if Save or Load do not function properly for any of the flowsheet elements, this will fail. It could also cause multi-threading issues to arise, if not properly implemented by the flowsheet elements. To disable solving in a background thread, make sure that "Allow solving in a background thread" is not checked.

Parametric studies are always solved in background threads; to make effective use of a multi-core computer, COFE will use multiple background threads to solve a parametric study. By default, COFE allows for multiple solution threads for solving parametric studies. If you find that parametric studies do not result expected solutions, or you run into unexpected crashes when running parametric studies, the possibility exists that a flowsheet component does not deal well with multi-threading. Please try in this case setting the maximum number of concurrent solutions for parametric studies to 1.

By default, the Unit Operation properties dialog opens when you double-click a Unit Operation. This behaviour can be changed by selecting "Edit Unit operation" when double-clicking a Unit Operation; in this case the Unit Operation properties dialog will be skipped, and the Unit Operation's private dialog will be shown directly.

Unit sets

On the Unit sets tab, you can configure sets of units-of-measure. The configured sets of units-of-measure can be used as default units-of-measure in a flowsheet.

One of the sets is the default set. This default set will automatically apply to new blank documents (unless a document template is selected). The default set will also be used for documents that were saved with a version of COFE older than

To edit a unit set, select the set and click Edit. For each of the indicated quantities you can pick the default unit-of-measure. If the "Prefer mass rather than molar" box is checked, properties that can be shown in mass or mole basis will show in mass basis. E.g. enthalpy will show - in SI units - as J/kg, not as J/mol. This option also affects the default selection for mole or mass fractions in the stream dialog and reports.

If the "Prefer flow units for extensive properties" is checked, extensive properties for which overall calculation is supported, will show in time dimensions. Energy content of a stream will thus show as J/s.


The Plots tab allows configuration of the default colors and resolution for plots.