Fakultät Informatik

Scientific Visualization

Prof. Dr. R. Westermann

Scientific Visualization

Time, Place:

Thursday 13:45 - 16:00 MI Interim HS 1




Einführung in die Informatik 1, Analysis, Linear Algebra

This course is intended for students in Informatics (Diploma/Bachelor/Master), Computational Science and Engineering, Computational Mechanics, Computational Methods in Applied Science and Engineering. It is given in English. The course consists of 3 lecture hours and 1 hour of free exercise, giving 5 ECTS.


Announcement: The inspection of the written exam will be on Monday 17.3.2014 in room 02.13.054 from 10-11am.


This lecture provides an introduction to the fundamentals of data visualization. It discusses the different stages of the visualization pipeline and examplifies application areas where data visualization is paramount. It gives a survey over the many different sources the data can result from, and addresses techniques to bring the initial data into a form that can be visualized. Particular aspects covered are data interpolation, triangulation, and filtering techniques. We will then outline different strategies to map the data onto a visual representation via graphical primitives. Finally, specific visualization fields are addressed, such as volume visualization and flow visualization.


The students understand the basic visualization algorithms used by modern visualization software. They learn for which data types to use these algorithms, and they become aware of frequently used software systems supporting these algorithms. In the practical exercise, students are introduced to some available software systems, and they are supposed to work with these systems on their own initiative.

Course Topics

  • Introduction
  • Basics (visualization pipeline, data structures, data types)
  • Key application - medical imaging and computational fluid dynamics
  • Data reconstruction, interpolation, triangulation
  • Filtering techniques
  • Basic mapping techniques
  • Volume visualization
  • Vector field visualization
  • Terrain rendering

Lecture Slides and Programming




  • Foley, Van Dam, Feiner, Hughes: Computer Graphics: Principles and Practice, Addison-Wesley, 2nd edition in C
  • Watt, Watt: Computer Graphics, Addison-Wesley
  • Glassner: Principles of digital image synthesis, Morgan Kaufman
  • Encarnaçao, Klein, Strasser: Graphische Datenverarbeitung, 4. Auflage, Oldenburg Verlag
  • Griebel, Bungartz, Zenger: Computer Graphik, Vieweg Verlag
  • Nielson, Hagen, Müller: Scientific Visualization , IEEE Computer Society Press
  • Schumann, Müller: Visualisierung - Grundlagen und allgemeine Methoden, Springer Verlag
  • Gallagher: Computer Visualization: Graphics Techniques for Scientific and Engineering Analysis, CRC Press
  • Brodlie: Scientific Visualization - Techniques and Applications, Springer Verlag
  • Earnshaw, Wiseman: An Introductory Guide to Scientific Visualization, Springer Verlag


Matthias Niessner, our new Professor from Stanford University, offers a number of interesting topics for  master theses.


PhD positions on   Computational Fabrication and 3D Printing and  Photorealistic Rendering for Deep Learning and Online Reconstruction are available at the Computer Graphics & Visualization group.