S. Heßel, O. Fernandes, S. Boblest, P. Offenhäuser, M. Hoffmann, A. Beck, T. Ertl, C. Glass, C.-D. Munz, F. Sadlo:

Visualization of 2D Wave Propagation by Huygens' Principle

In Proceedings of Eurographics Symposium on Parallel Graphics and Visualization (EGPGV), pp. 19–28, 2015.


We present a novel technique to visualize wave propagation in 2D scalar fields. Direct visualization of wave fronts is susceptible to visual clutter and interpretation difficulties due to space-time interference and global influence. To avoid this, we employ Huygens' principle to obtain virtual sources that provide a concise spacetime representation of the overall dynamics by means of elementary waves. We first demonstrate the utility of our overall approach by computing a dense field of virtual sources. This variant offers full insight into space-time wave dynamics in terms of elementary waves, but it reflects the full problem of inverse wave propagation and hence suffers from high costs regarding memory consumption and computation. As an alternative, we therefore provide a less accurate and less generic but more efficient approach. This alternative performs wave front extraction with subsequent Hough transform to identify potential virtual sources. We evaluate both approaches and demonstrate their strengths and weaknesses by means of a GPU-based prototype and an implementation on a Cray XC40 supercomputer, using data from different domains.

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