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29 January 2007Exploratory simulation for astrophysics
Exploratory simulation involves the combination of computational steering and visualization at interactive speeds.
This presents a number of challenges for large scientific data sets, such as those from astrophysics. A computational
model is required such that steering the simulation while in progress is both physically valid and scientifically useful. Effective and appropriate visualization and feedback methods are needed to facilitate the discovery
process. Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) techniques are of interest in the area of Computational Fluid
Dynamics (CFD), notably for the simulation of astrophysical phenomena in areas such as star formation and
evolution. This paper discusses the issues involved with creating an exploratory simulation environment for SPH.
We introduce the concepts of painting and simulation trails as a novel solution to the competing concerns of
interactivity and accuracy, and present a prototype of a system that implements these new ideas. This paper
describes work in progress.