Research topics

Recent solutions

Graphical representation in shades of blue and red, visualizing noise levels in engine prototype development.
The simulation and interactive visual analysis of noise play an essential role in the prototyping of new engines.

Visualization of noise-simulation data

Due to increasingly stringent noise regulations and rising passenger comfort requirements, noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) simulation remains very important in the automotive industry. Early detection of problematic noise sources in the design and production process is crucial for reducing development costs and time-to-market of a product. Analyzing noise simulation data is challenging due to the data size and complexity. Working closely with our industry partners, we have developed a new, interactive approach to quickly identify and analyze critical noise sources. Complementing traditional analysis, the new approach provides additional insight into the data and facilitates understanding of the simulated phenomenon. Multiple carefully designed, interactive, linked views enable the investigation of noise, vibration, and harshness at multiple levels of detail, in both the frequency and spatial domains. Our research results have been published in several papers, for example "Comparative Visualization for Noise Simulation Data" (2023), "Interactive Visual Analysis of Structure-borne Noise Data" (2022), "Getting Insight into Noise, Vibration and Harshness Simulation Data" (2021).

Various representations of ergonomic risk assessments
The interactive visual analytics tool ErgoExplorer makes ergonomic risk assessments more holistic and comprehensive than ever before.

Visualization for ergonomics: ErgoExplorer  - interactive visual analysis of risk assessment data

Ergonomic risk assessments are carried out more frequently today than in the past due to increased awareness. Traditional risk assessment, based on expert-assisted observation of workplaces and manual completion of score tables, is still predominant. Data analysis is typically done with a focus on critical moments, but without explicit support from contextual information and changes over time. In contrast to current practice, we focus on data spanning multiple actions and multiple workers, while preserving all contextual information. Data is automatically extracted from video streams and explored in an integrated interactive visual analysis system. The newly introduced approach supports analysis and exploration at several levels of detail, ranging from a general overview, down to inspecting individual frames in the video stream, if necessary. The first results have been published in IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics, and have been presented at IEEE VIS 2023, the premium visualization research conference. More details can be found on the project website.

Innovative interactive visualization of urban data
The VRVis visualization solution for displaying complex urban data was recognized with an Honorable Mention at IEEE VIS 2022.

Visualization of complex urban data

The increasing availability of official data of cities, as well as the development of open data and citizen science movements, require efficient analysis solutions to enable all interested stakeholders to extract useful information from the vast amounts of urban data. Interactive visualization has emerged as an indispensable complement to automated analysis of complex spatio-temporal data.

The IEEE VAST Challenge 2022 provides complex urban data that spans a 15-month period and includes citizen traces, various citizen data (income, purchases, restaurant visits, etc.), and data on businesses operating in the city. We used ComVis, our coordinated multiple views solution, to explore and analyze the data, with a particular focus on the urban economy. Our solution received an honorable mention at the IEEE VIS 2022 conference for its clear articulation of hypotheses and metrics. The same data set also provides the basis for our publication "Interactive Exploration of Complex Heterogeneous Data: A Use Case on Understanding City Economics" (2023).

Screenshot of the Geotunnel Viewer software, where you can see a tunnel tube with different markers and additional info in different fields.
With the Geotunnel Viewer, complex information from sensor data can be easily translated into easy-to-understand interactive 3D scenes.

Geotunnel Viewer - interactive monitoring systems for tunneling

Tunnel monitoring is an integral part of construction and for the safety of operation. It is based on regular measurements of the forces acting in the surrounding rock and tunnel wall deformations caused by them. For that, various sensors are placed along the path of a tunnel. The Geotunnel Viewer is an interactive tunnel monitoring tool based on digital twins of tunnels as key elements, which are enhanced by geospatially anchored sensors. Animated visualizations show the progress of the construction and its effect on sensor values. Recently we embedded a storytelling mechanism that supports collaboration among remotely located analysts (e.g., geotechnical experts). It makes observations based on complex heterogeneous sensor data in its spatiotemporal context more understandable and reproducible. Storytelling is also a very effective way to train apprentices.