Encyclopedia of Database Systems

2018 Edition
| Editors: Ling Liu, M. Tamer Özsu

Scientific Visualization

  • Ronald PeikertEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-8265-9_324


Scientific visualization [1] provides graphical representations of numerical data for their qualitative and quantitative analysis. In contrast to a fully automatic analysis (e.g., with statistical methods), the final analytic step is left to the user, thus utilizing the power of the human visual system. Scientific visualization differs from the related field of information visualization in that it focuses on data that represent samples of continuous functions of space and time, as opposed to data that are inherently discrete.

The challenge in scientific visualization is to cope with massive data, which cannot be presented to the user in an unprocessed way for several reasons:
  1. 1.

    Volumetric data, i.e., data given on a three-dimensional domain, occlude each other. This problem becomes even more challenging if data are not scalars, but vectors or even tensors.

  2. 2.

    Visualization should provide a global picture of the spatial and temporal behavior of the data, but also allow for...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

Recommended Reading

  1. 1.
    Hansen CD, Johnson CR, editors. Visualization handbook. San Diego: Academic; 2004.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Schroeder W, Martin K, Lorensen B. The visualization toolkit: an object-oriented approach to 3D graphics. 4th ed. New York: Kitware; 2006.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.ETH ZurichZurichSwitzerland

Section editors and affiliations

  • Hans Hinterberger
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceETH ZurichZurichSwitzerland