Applications of Texture-Based Flow Visualization

Texture-Based Flow Visualization of Lung Movement

Abstract: Flow visualization is a classic sub-field of scientific visualization. The task of flow visualization algorithms is to depict vector data, i.e., data with magnitude and direction. An important category of flow visualization techniques makes use primarily of textures in order to convey the properties of a vector field. Recently, several research advances have been made in this special category, of dense, texture-based techniques. We present the application of the most recent texture-based techniques to real world data from (1) oceanography and meteorology, (2) computational fluid dynamics (CFD) in the automotive industry, and (3) medicine. We describe the motivations for using texture-based algorithms as well as the important recent advancements required for their successful incorporation into industry grade software. Our goal is to appeal to practitioners in the field interested in learning how these recent techniques can help them gain insight into problems that engineers and other professionals may be faced with on a daily basis. Many of these applications have only recently become possible.
Paper(s): Applications of Texture-Based Flow Visualization by Robert S. Laramee, Gordon Erlebacher, Christoph Garth, Tobias Schafhitzel, Holger Theisel, Xavier Tricoche, Tino Weinkauf, and Daniel Weiskopf in Engineering Applications of Computational Fluid Mechanics (EACFM) , Vol. 2, No. 3, September 2008, pages 264-274 ( PDF file, ~5.4MB )
Supplementary Images and MPEGs
(Click on images for higher resolution version)
Swirl Motion at the boundary depicted with streamlines Swirl Motion at the boundary depicted with texture

The visualization of swirl motion at the inner boundary surface of a combustion chamber from an automotive engine cylinder: (left) geometric flow visualization using streamlines, and (right) texture-based flow visualization, both being used in combination with velocity magnitude color-map.

Winds over Europe depicted with textures

The time-dependent weather patterns over Europe. This visualization is the result of the Lagrangian-Eulerian Advection (LEA) algorithm. Data courtesy of the Swiss Center for Scientific Computing.

Link to online LEA application, The Winds Over Europe

Link to Swiss Center for Scientific Computing

Dye injection used to visualize flow past a cylinder

Time-varying, planar flow past a cylinder visualized with dye advection. In this case, the dye sources result in streaklines. The color of the streaklines is toggled over regular, periodic intervals. Data courtesy of X. Ding from Florida State University.

Texture-based flow visualization on the surface of a BMW

Texture-based flow visualization on a curved surface for an automotive CFD simulation.

3D visualization of Benard convection. Benard convection leads to an exchange of heat between a hot bottom surface and a colder top surface.

A recent texture-based flow visualization algorithm (ISA) used in a commercial application to visualize the boundary flow at the surface of a piston cylinder. In this case, engineers are trying to re-create a tumble motion pattern of flow.

[MPEG animation] 900 frames, 512x512 resolution (~16 MB).

Phong illumination and 3D texture advection are used to visualize the characteristics of lung motion during an inhale-exhale cycle.

[MPEG animation] high resolution (~9 MB).
[Quicktime (MOV) animation] high resolution (~7 MB).


This page is maintained by Robert S. Laramee.
In case of comments, questions, suggestions, or collaboration ideas, send email to: r.s.laramee "at" swansea.ac.uk.

Valid HTML 4.01 Transitional