Interactive visualization of 3D mantle convection

Megan Damon, Masanori C. Kameyama, Michael Knox, David H. Porter, Dave Yuen, Erik O.D. Sevre

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


The current availability of thousands of processors at many high performance computing centers has made it feasible to carry out, in near real time, interactive visualization of 3D mantle convection temperature fields, using grid configurations having 10-100 million unknowns. We will describe the technical details involved in carrying out this endeavor, using the facilities available at the Laboratory of Computational Science and Engineering (LCSE) at the University of Minnesota. These technical details involve the modification of a parallel mantle convection program, ACuTEMan; the usage of client-server socket based programs to transfer upwards of a terabyte of time series scientific model data using a local network; a rendering system containing multiple nodes; a high resolution PowerWall display, and the interactive visualization software, DSCVR. We have found that working in an interactive visualizastion mode allows for fast and efficient analysis of mantle convection results.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)49-57
Number of pages9
JournalVisual Geosciences
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2008

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgments We thank Professor Paul R. Woodward for his always sage advice and the NSF Middleware and ITR programs for support. This equipment used in this research was supported by the NSF MRI grant awarded to Paul Woodward.


  • 3D volume visualization
  • Interactive visualization
  • Mantle convection
  • Parallel computing


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