Cloud tracing in convection-diffusion systems

Kwan-Liu Ma, Philip J. Smith

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

8 Scopus citations


This paper describes a highly interactive method for computer visualization of simultaneous three-dimensional vector and scalar flow fields in convection-diffusion systems. This method allows a computational fluid dynamics user to visualize the basic physical process of dispersion and mixing rather than just the vector and scalar values computed by the simulation. It is based on transforming the vector field from a traditionally Eulerian reference frame into a Lagrangian reference frame. Fluid elements are traced through the vector field for the mean path as well as the statistical dispersion of the fluid elements about the mean position by using added scalar information about the root mean square value of the vector field and its Lagrangian time scale. In this way, clouds of fluid elements are traced not just mean paths. We have used this method to visualize the simulation of an industrial incinerator to help identify mechanisms for poor mixing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 4th Conference on Visualization, VIS 1993
EditorsDan Bergeron, Greg Nielson
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery, Inc
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)0818639407, 9780818639401
StatePublished - Oct 25 1993
Externally publishedYes
Event4th Annual IEEE Conference on Visualization, VIS 1993 - San Jose, United States
Duration: Oct 25 1993Oct 29 1993


Other4th Annual IEEE Conference on Visualization, VIS 1993
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Jose

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
  • Software


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