Position-Based Simulation Methods in Computer Graphics

Jan Bender, Matthias Müller, Miles Macklin
Tutorial Proceedings of Eurographics

The physically-based simulation of mechanical effects has been an important research topic in computer graphics for more than two decades. Classical methods in this field discretize Newton's second law and determine different forces to simulate various effects like stretching, shearing, and bending of deformable bodies or pressure and viscosity of fluids, to mention just a few. Given these forces, velocities and finally positions are determined by a numerical integration of the resulting accelerations.

In the last years position-based simulation methods have become popular in the graphics community. In contrast to classical simulation approaches these methods compute the position changes in each simulation step directly, based on the solution of a quasi-static problem. Therefore, position-based approaches are fast, stable and controllable which make them well-suited for use in interactive environments. However, these methods are generally not as accurate as force-based methods but still provide visual plausibility. Hence, the main application areas of position-based simulation are virtual reality, computer games and special effects in movies and commercials.

In this tutorial we first introduce the basic concept of position-based dynamics. Then we present different solvers and compare them with the classical implicit Euler method. We discuss approaches to improve the convergence of these solvers. Moreover, we show how position-based methods are applied to simulate hair, cloth, volumetric deformable bodies, rigid body systems and fluids. We also demonstrate how complex effects like anisotropy or plasticity can be simulated and introduce approaches to improve the performance. Finally, we give an outlook and discuss open problems.

» Show BibTeX

@inproceedings{BMM2015,
title = "Position-Based Simulation Methods in Computer Graphics",
author = "Jan Bender and Matthias M{\"u}ller and Miles Macklin",
year = "2015",
booktitle = "EUROGRAPHICS 2015 Tutorials",
publisher = "Eurographics Association",
location = "Zurich, Switzerland"
}




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