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EnSight 10 Improves CAE/CFD Visualization
Posted Tue January 17, 2012 @04:25PM
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News CEI Inc., maker of EnSight visualization software for computer aided engineering (CAE) and computational fluid dynamics (CFD), today announced the debut of EnSight 10, the latest version of its powerful 3D visualization software for post-processing of CAE/CFD data and analysis.

EnSight 10 features an all new, structured volume rendering capability and a streamlined user interface for analyzing and communicating complex simulation results.

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CEI unveiled EnSight 10 during the 50th Annual Aerospace Sciences Meeting of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics that runs January 9-12 at the Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center in Nashville, Tenn.

“Since its original debut in 1994, EnSight has become the gold standard for visualization and analysis for the CAE/CFD market around the world,” said Anders Grimsrud, founder and president of CEI. “Today, EnSight 10 represents a quantum leap in ease of use and efficiency that our loyal EnSight users will definitely appreciate, and will make it much easier for new users to learn and get up to speed.”

Exclusive “Practical” Volume Rendering
The hallmark of EnSight 10 is its exclusive new structured volume rendering capability, a major upgrade in speed and practical usability from its original debut in version 9.2. By using a structured, uniform mesh to render complex data sets, EnSight 10 offers better interactivity and eliminates the huge memory requirements that often result from unstructured volume rendering. The result is a smoother and faster rendering of large, complex data volumes. With the ability to run parallel rendering across multiple graphics cards and visualize volume datasets. The EnSight user can specify the structured volume’s resolution, allowing them to balance resolution versus graphics memory requirements.

EnSight 10 further enhances volume rendering by taking what was previously a multi-step process that required a tutorial or training and streamlining it into a single dialog with the critical steps all pulled into that dialog. “It's the tightest we’ve ever integrated a feature in EnSight,” said Grimsrud. Future versions of EnSight 10 will also support distributed parallel volume rendering in the EnSight DR version.

“This is by far the most sophisticated version of EnSight yet,” said Robert J. Kares, Ph.D., Senior Technical Staff Member in the Applied Computational Physics Division at Los Alamos National Laboratory and a long-time user of the EnSight product line. “The ability to combine the new volume visualization feature with clips, isosurfaces and any of EnSight’s many other visualization tools has proven to be a tremendously powerful method for understanding the results from our petascale fluid flow simula-tions in 3D. This new capability has revealed an enormous wealth of important detail in our big 3D flow simulations that had long been hidden to us.”

New GUI, Customizable Toolbar
The all new EnSight 10 user interface offers exceptional customization options and ease of use with intuitive drag-and-drop and right-click capabilities. Now, EnSight 10 users can quickly color each part in the scene instantly by dragging and dropping calculated variables from new variables list. EnSight’s unique style manager allows the user to create customized graph styles with specific colors, font and other specifications, then apply this pre-built style onto other data graphs. This eliminates the need to configure each specific property of new plots one at a time, saving dozens of clicks, improving productivity and allowing the user more time to study the data rather than fuss with the appearance to get it just right. The drag-and-drop and right-click capabilities in EnSight 10 also make it easy to manipulate and modify various parts, viewports and other objects without having to manually switch viewing modes.

EnSight 10 even allows users to build custom GUI toolbars, similar to the Windows Ribbon, based on the options, features and functionality needed. For example, for jet engine analysis, place only the tools required for this work on the toolbar and eliminate the distraction and need to search through all the other functionality to find the tools required. If EnSight customers or developers build new features using the Python scripting language, those features can be added to the GUI toolbar as if the feature was included in standard EnSight.

Broader File and Language Compatibility
The new EnSight 10 is also more compatible with a wider range of data files and languages. Support for additional data readers includes the ability to read FLD files, a common Japanese format, as well as newer CGNS file versions, with both 2D and 3D parts in CGNS files now supported. EnSight 10’s GUI menu and dialogues can also be translated to other languages such as Japanese or Chinese.

“EnSight remains an enormously deep package and organizing this complexity is a big challenge,” Kares said. “This latest release proves that CEI continues to take usability seriously and demonstrates steady improvement in the evolution of organizing this complexity. This new version is very intuitive and easy to use and to learn, which are just as important as the analysis capabilities it provides.”

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