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Open Access Publications from the University of California

On the Computation of Integral Curves in Adaptive Mesh Refinement Vector Fields


Integral curves, such as streamlines, streaklines, pathlines, and timelines, are an essential tool in the analysis of vector field structures, offering straightforward and intuitive interpretation of visualization results. While such curves have a long-standing tradition in vector field visualization, their application to Adaptive Mesh Refinement (AMR) simulation results poses unique problems. AMR is a highly effective discretization method for a variety of physical simulation problems and has recently been applied to the study of vector fields in flow and magnetohydrodynamic applications. The cell-centered nature of AMR data and discontinuities in the vector field representation arising from AMR level boundaries complicate the application of numerical integration methods to compute integral curves. In this paper, we propose a novel approach to alleviate these problems and show its application to streamline visualization in an AMR model of the magnetic field of the solar system as well as to a simulation of two incompressible viscous vortex rings merging.

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