Fakultät Informatik

Computational Steering in the Virtual Windtunnel


Computational steering describes the interactive modification of objects and parameters during the run time of a simulation. It enables the user to modify the input parameters of the simulation and study the result on-the-fly. Thus, users in a computational steering environment obtain an intuitive understanding of the influence of the input parameters on the simulated processes.
In this project we rigorously exploit the ever growing power of high performance GPUs to enable computational steering in different application areas. In particular, we intend to develop demonstrators with applications in flow simulation. In another project we develop computational steering environments for real-time surgery simulation and computational mechanics. On the GPU we have implemented numerical solvers for a variety of different simulation models for the governing equations of fluid motion, including Direct Numerical Simulation, Lattice-Boltzmann, and Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics.

2D Wave Equation and Photon Tracing

Numerical simulation of the 2D wave equation and photorealistic rendering of the water surface including caustics,
both in real-time at over 100 fps on a 512x512 simulation grid.
Download Video (right click and save as): 2D Water and Caustics (42 mb)

Smoke Simulation

Controllable numerical simulation of 2.5D smoke using the incompressible Navier-Stokes equations (128x128x512 simulation grid @ 200 fps)
Download Video (right click and save as): Smoke Simulation (6 mb)

Direct Numerical Fluid Simulation

Left: Dynamic obstacles (128x64x64 Grid, 120 FPS), Right: Nieschenströmung (128x64x64 Grid, 70 FPS)
Download Video (right click and save as): Navier Stokes Fluid Simulation

3D Newtonian Fluid - Lattice Boltzmann Method

256x128x128 Grid - 35 FPS
Download Video (right click and save as): Lattice Boltzmann Fluid Simulation (14 mb)

Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics

GPU SPH (8000 Particles, 55 FPS)
Download Video (right click and save as): SPH Fluid Simulation (19 mb)

Besides the development of efficient algorithms for flow simulations on GPUs, an additional issue is the development of new concepts for the analysis of flow field dynamics in computational steering environments. Visual exploration of such fields imposes significant requirements on the visualization system and demands for approaches capable of dealing with large amounts of vector valued information at interactive rates. New visualization concepts for vector data as well as streaming approaches for time varying data sets are at the core of this research.

Interactive Visual Exploration of Unsteady 3D Flow

Unsteady Flow Exploration
Download Videos (right click and save as): Dye Advection in Unsteady Flow (25 mb), Tera Shake - Earthquake Exploration (65 mb)

Importance-Driven Particle Techniques for Flow Visualization

Importance-Driven Visualization
Download Video (right click and save as): Research paper submission video (46 mb)

Interactive Streak Surface Visualization

Streak Surface Visualization
Download Video (right click and save as): Research paper submission video (61 mb)

Interactive Separating Streak Surfaces

Separating Streak Surfaces
Download Video (right click and save as): Research paper submission video (40 mb)



- In collaboration with partners from industry, we have a number of thesis topics available in the area of point-based rendering, geo-localization using public data, scene fusion from different viewpoints. If you are interested, please contact  westermann(at)tum.de


- One PhD position on   Turbulence Visualization is available at the Computer Graphics & Visualization group.