Integrating Fortran Code with MATLAB: A Guide to Compiling Using the MEX Function

If you’re working with Fortran code and want to integrate it with MATLAB, you might come across the need to compile your Fortran file using the mex function. The mex function allows you to create MEX functions, which are interface programs that enable you to call Fortran code from within MATLAB. In this article, we’ll explore the general steps involved in compiling a Fortran file using mex and discuss some common issues you might encounter.

Integrating Fortran Code with MATLAB: A Guide to Compiling Using the MEX Function

1. Prepare Your Fortran Code

The first step is to make sure your Fortran code is properly structured and includes a function that you want to interface with MATLAB. This function will be called using the MEX interface. Ensure that your code is error-free and ready for compilation.

2. Rename File Extension

The Fortran code file should have a .f or .for extension. Either extension is valid, but for compatibility purposes, it’s recommended to use .f. You can simply rename your file to have the correct extension.

3. Define the MEX Function

In your Fortran code, you need to define the MEX function with the proper signature. This involves creating a function that matches the MEX interface and specifying the input and output arguments.

4. Compile Using mex

Open MATLAB and use the mex function to compile your Fortran code. You might need to provide additional compiler and linker flags to ensure proper compilation. Make sure to adjust the output name and flags according to your needs.

mex myfortranfile.f -compatibleArrayDims -output myfortranfunction

5. Test Your MEX Function

Once compiled, you can call your MEX function just like any other MATLAB function. Test it with sample data to ensure that it works as expected.

Conclusion – matlab fortran

Compiling Fortran code using the mex function can be a powerful way to integrate your existing codebase with MATLAB. It allows you to harness the capabilities of both languages for your projects. Keep in mind that the success of the compilation process depends on the correct function definition and proper compilation flags.


Let’s consider an example where you have a Fortran code that performs complex mathematical calculations. You want to interface this code with MATLAB for advanced analysis. By following the steps above, you can compile the Fortran code into a MEX function and utilize it within MATLAB to achieve your goals.


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