Dynamic isosurface extraction and level-of-detail in voxel space
A new visualization representation is described, which dramatically improves interactivity for scientific visualizations of structured grid data sets by creating isosurfaces at interactive speeds and with dynamically changeable levels-of-detail (LOD). This representation enables greater interactivity by allowing an analyst to dynamically specify both the desired isosurface threshold and required levelof-detail to be used while rendering the image. A scientist can therefore view very large
... ew very large isosurfaces at interactive speeds (with a low level-of-detail), but has the full data set always available for analysis. The key idea is that various levels-of-detail are represented as differently sized hexahedral "virtual voxels," which are stored in a three-dimensional binary tree, or kd-tree; thus the level-of-detail representation is done in voxel space instead of the traditional approach which relies on surface or geometry space decimations. Utilizing the voxel space is an essential step to moving from a postprocessing visualization paradigm to a quantitative, real-time paradigm. This algorithm has been implemented as an integral component of the EIGEN/VR project at Sandia National Laboratories, which provides a rich environment for scientists to interactively explore and visualize the results of very large-scale simulations performed on massively parallel supercomputers.