An exploratory technique for coherent visualization of time-varying volume data

A. Tikhonova, C. D. Correa, Kwan-Liu Ma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


The selection of an appropriate global transfer function is essential for visualizing time-varying simulation data. This is especially challenging when the global data range is not known in advance, as is often the case in remote and in-situ visualization settings. Since the data range may vary dramatically as the simulation progresses, volume rendering using local transfer functions may not be coherent for all time steps. We present an exploratory technique that enables coherent classification of time-varying volume data. Unlike previous approaches, which require pre-processing of all time steps, our approach lets the user explore the transfer function space without accessing the original 3D data. This is useful for interactive visualization, and absolutely essential for in-situ visualization, where the entire simulation data range is not known in advance. Our approach generates a compact representation of each time step at rendering time in the form of ray attenuation functions, which are used for subsequent operations on the opacity and color mappings. The presented approach offers interactive exploration of time-varying simulation data that alleviates the cost associated with reloading and caching large data sets.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)783-792
Number of pages10
JournalComputer Graphics Forum
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 2010


  • I.3.7 [Computer Graphics]: Three-Dimensional Graphics and Realism - Color, shading, shadowing, and texture

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


Dive into the research topics of 'An exploratory technique for coherent visualization of time-varying volume data'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this