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Proceedings Paper

Volume visualization for the unstructured grid data
Author(s): Koji Koyamada
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Paper Abstract

We propose a method for visualizing 3-D scalar data defmed on unstructured grid data by means of tetrahedral primitives. In these primitives, data are distributed linearly not only along edge lines but along any line segments. This characteristic is well suited to hnëar interpolation, which is a very effective method of visualization in terms of computational cost. Because of the wide use of the 3-D fmite element method (FEM), there is a strong need for volume visualization of the unstructured grid data that is output by 3-D FEM analysis. In this kind of analysis, various kinds of fmite elements, which are composed of unstructured grid data, are used in a mixed form to represent a complicated 3-D space. In a finite element, data are expressed by means of the element's own interpolation function. In terms of data processing, a simple interpolation function is most suitable, because it consumes few computational resources. We therefore select a linear tetrahedral element (LTE), and introduce a concept of element subdivision to other fmite elements. In our method, each fmite element is first reconstructed as a set of LTEs that approximates its interpolation function. We visualize iso-valued surfaces from 3-D scalar data by using an LTE as a processing primitive. For this, we have developed two methods. One is a method for extracting triangular facets as iso-valued surfaces and rendering them by a traditional shading algorithm. The other is a method for rendering LTEs directly in order to visualize iso-valued surfaces. We apply these methods to analysis of thermal stress in a semi-conductor chip and simulation of air-flow in a clean room, and confirm their effectiveness.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 August 1990
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 1259, Extracting Meaning from Complex Data: Processing, Display, Interaction, (1 August 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.19966
Show Author Affiliations
Koji Koyamada, IBM Japan Ltd. (Japan)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1259:
Extracting Meaning from Complex Data: Processing, Display, Interaction
Edward J. Farrell, Editor(s)

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