Visual analysis of uncertainties in ocean forecasts for planning and operation of off-shore structures

Thomas Hollt, Ahmed Magdy, Guoning Chen, Ganesh Gopalakrishnan, Ibrahim Hoteit, Charles D. Hansen, Markus Hadwiger

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

30 Scopus citations


We present a novel integrated visualization system that enables interactive visual analysis of ensemble simulations used in ocean forecasting, i.e, simulations of sea surface elevation. Our system enables the interactive planning of both the placement and operation of off-shore structures. We illustrate this using a real-world simulation of the Gulf of Mexico. Off-shore structures, such as those used for oil exploration, are vulnerable to hazards caused by strong loop currents. The oil and gas industry therefore relies on accurate ocean forecasting systems for planning their operations. Nowadays, these forecasts are based on multiple spatio-temporal simulations resulting in multidimensional, multivariate and multivalued data, so-called ensemble data. Changes in sea surface elevation are a good indicator for the movement of loop current eddies, and our visualization approach enables their interactive exploration and analysis. We enable analysis of the spatial domain, for planning the placement of structures, as well as detailed exploration of the temporal evolution at any chosen position, for the prediction of critical ocean states that require the shutdown of rig operations. © 2013 IEEE.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2013 IEEE Pacific Visualization Symposium (PacificVis)
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)9781467347976
StatePublished - Feb 2013

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01


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