It might not make you the life of the party at Oktoberfest, but scientists who study fluid dynamics say they are one big step closer to creating the perfect 'virtual' beer. As this ScienCentral News video shows, computer scientists and mathematicians have developed new software models that tackle the difficult, and expensive, problem of animating fluids.
Water gushes into a cruise ship stateroom; a helicopter hovers over a river, creating spray; a car splashes down a flooded city street. Animated scenes like these from blockbuster films typically cost Hollywood large sums of money and require lots of time and human attention.
But scientists at CSIRO in Australia and the Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI) in South Korea have developed software that can simulate fluid motions automatically and relatively quickly using a common computer.
"One of our interests is not just to try to push the envelope on the effects, but to make them much more accessible by reducing the cost, particularly of labor, in creating these effects, by automating as much as possible, by using as much physics as possible," says Paul Cleary, leader of the computational fluid dynamics group at CSIRO that developed the modeling capability, and the principle author of the software.To create the software, the researchers used a mathematical process called "smoothed particle hydrodynamics."