Welcome



Welcome to the Computer Animation Group at RWTH Aachen University!

The research of the Computer Animation Group focuses on the physically-based simulation of rigid bodies, deformable solids and fluids in interactive virtual reality applications and computer animation, and on related topics such as GPGPU and real-time visualization. The main application areas include virtual prototyping, medical simulation, computer games and special effects in movies.

Best Paper Award

Our paper "A Micropolar Material Model for Turbulent SPH Fluids" got the best paper award at the ACM SIGGRAPH / EUROGRAPHICS Symposium on Computer Animation.

Aug. 15, 2017

SPlisHSPlasH now available on Github!

SPlisHSPlasH is an open-source library for the physically-based simulation of fluids. The simulation in this library is based on the Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) method which is a popular meshless Lagrangian approach to simulate complex fluid effects. Check it out here!

Nov. 17, 2016

CompactNSearch now available on Github!

We published an open source implementation of our fixed radius neighborhood search for point clouds. The algorithm is written in C++, parallelized and features reordering of the points according to a space-filling Z curve. The implementation is particularly useful for particle based fluid simulations following the Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) approach. Check it out here!

Nov. 17, 2016

Recent Publications

Robust eXtended Finite Elements for Complex Cutting of Deformables

ACM Transactions on Graphics (SIGGRAPH 2017)

In this paper we present a robust remeshing-free cutting algorithm on the basis of the eXtended Finite Element Method (XFEM) and fully implicit time integration. One of the most crucial points of the XFEM is that integrals over discontinuous polynomials have to be computed on subdomains of the polyhedral elements. Most existing approaches construct a cut-aligned auxiliary mesh for integration. In contrast, we propose a cutting algorithm that includes the construction of specialized quadrature rules for each dissected element without the requirement to explicitly represent the arising subdomains. Moreover, we solve the problem of ill-conditioned or even numerically singular solver matrices during time integration using a novel algorithm that constrains non-contributing degrees of freedom (DOFs) and introduce a preconditioner that efficiently reuses the constructed quadrature weights. Our method is particularly suitable for fine structural cutting as it decouples the added number of DOFs from the cut's geometry and correctly preserves geometry and physical properties by accurate integration. Due to the implicit time integration these fine features can still be simulated robustly using large time steps. As opposed to this, the vast majority of existing approaches either use remeshing or element duplication. Remeshing based methods are able to correctly preserve physical quantities but strongly couple cut geometry and mesh resolution leading to an unnecessary large number of additional DOFs. Element duplication based approaches keep the number of additional DOFs small but fail at correct conservation of mass and stiffness properties. We verify consistency and robustness of our approach on simple and reproducible academic examples while stability and applicability are demonstrated in large scenarios with complex and fine structural cutting.

 

An hp-Adaptive Discretization Algorithm for Signed Distance Field Generation

IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics

In this paper we present an hp-adaptive algorithm to generate discrete higher-order polynomial Signed Distance Fields (SDFs) on axis-aligned hexahedral grids from manifold polygonal input meshes. Using an orthonormal polynomial basis, we efficiently fit the polynomials to the underlying signed distance function on each cell. The proposed error-driven construction algorithm is globally adaptive and iteratively refines the SDFs using either spatial subdivision (h-refinement) following an octree scheme or by cell-wise adaption of the polynomial approximation's degree (p-refinement). We further introduce a novel decision criterion based on an error-estimator in order to decide whether to apply p- or h-refinement. We demonstrate that our method is able to construct more accurate SDFs at significantly lower memory consumption compared to previous approaches. While the cell-wise polynomial approximation will result in highly accurate SDFs, it can not be guaranteed that the piecewise approximation is continuous over cell interfaces. Therefore, we propose an optimization-based post-processing step in order to weakly enforce continuity. Finally, we apply our generated SDFs as collision detector to the physically-based simulation of geometrically highly complex solid objects in order to demonstrate the practical relevance and applicability of our method.

 

A Micropolar Material Model for Turbulent SPH Fluids

ACM SIGGRAPH / EUROGRAPHICS Symposium on Computer Animation (Best Paper Award)

In this paper we introduce a novel micropolar material model for the simulation of turbulent inviscid fluids. The governing equations are solved by using the concept of Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH). As already investigated in previous works, SPH fluid simulations suffer from numerical diffusion which leads to a lower vorticity, a loss in turbulent details and finally in less realistic results. To solve this problem we propose a micropolar fluid model. The micropolar fluid model is a generalization of the classical Navier-Stokes equations, which are typically used in computer graphics to simulate fluids. In contrast to the classical Navier-Stokes model, micropolar fluids have a microstructure and therefore consider the rotational motion of fluid particles. In addition to the linear velocity field these fluids also have a field of microrotation which represents existing vortices and provides a source for new ones. However, classical micropolar materials are viscous and the translational and the rotational motion are coupled in a dissipative way. Since our goal is to simulate turbulent fluids, we introduce a novel modified micropolar material for inviscid fluids with a non-dissipative coupling. Our model can generate realistic turbulences, is linear and angular momentum conserving, can be easily integrated in existing SPH simulation methods and its computational overhead is negligible.

Disclaimer Home Visual Computing institute RWTH Aachen University