Computer Graphics Laboratory ETH Zurich


Objective Finite-Time Flow Topology from Flowmap Expansion and Contraction

R. Bujack, S. Dutta, D. Zhang, T. Günther

Topological Methods in Data Analysis and Visualization VI, Springer, 2020, pp. 111-31


We extend the definition of the classic instantaneous vector field saddles, sinks, and sources to the finite-time setting by categorizing the domain based on the behavior of the flow map w.r.t. contraction or expansion. Since the intuitive Lagrangian approach turns out to be unusable in practice because it requires advection in unstable regions, we provide an alternative, sufficient criterion that can be computed in a robust way. We show that both definitions are objective, relate them to existing approaches, and show how the generalized critical points and their separatrices can be visualized.


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