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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Lagrangian Visualization of Flow-Embedded Surface Structures


The notions of Finite-Time Lyapunov Exponent (FTLE) and Lagrangian Coherent Structures provide a strong framework for the analysis and visualization of complex technical flows. Their definition is simple and intuitive, and they are built on a deep theoretical foundation. We apply these concepts to enable the analysis of flows in the immediate vicinity of the boundaries of flow-embedded objects by limiting the Lagrangian analysis to surfaces closely neighboring these boundaries. To this purpose, we present an approach to approximate FTLE fields over such surfaces. Furthermore, we achieve an effective depiction of boundary-related flow structures such as separation and attachment over object boundaries and specific insight into the surrounding flow using several specifically chosen visualization techniques. We document the applicability of our methods by presenting a number of application examples.

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