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Cherri Porter
Conference Coordinator
(505) 844-2788


- Invited Speaker: Dr. Tom Sederberg, Brigham Young University
- Invited Speaker: Dr. Mark Meyer, Pixar
- Invited Speaker: Dr. Phil Sewell, Nottingham University (UK)
- Invited Speaker: Dr. Ted Blacker, Sandia National Laboratories

Dr. Tom Sederberg - Brigham Young University

Title: The Story of T-Splines

Biography: Thomas W. Sederberg is a professor of computer science at Brigham Young University, and associate dean of the BYU College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences. He invented T-splines in 2003 and co-founded T-Splines, Inc. with his son and some former students.

Abstract: T-Splines is a CAD surface geometry representation that was created to address problems inherent in NURBS surfaces. For Example, T-Splines surfaces are watertight and are locally refineable,while NURBS-based models are not. These attributes make T-Splines attractive for use in isogeometric analysis.

This talk will discuss developments in the field of computer aided geometric design that led to the invention of T-Splines. It will overview the mathematics of both NURBS and T-Splines and explain how they can be used in isogeometric analysis.

The use of T-Splines from the vantage point of professional designers will be discussed, as well as the commercializaion of T-splines.

Dr. Mark Meyer - Pixar

Title: Subdivision Surfaces in the Movies

Biography: Mark Meyer is a Senior Research Scientist at Pixar Animation Studios. He received his BS in Computer Science and Computer Engineering from Northwestern University and his Ph.D. from Caltech. Before joining Pixar in 2003, Mark worked on virtual reality and simulation at Argonne National Laboratory and instructed Computer Graphics courses in the Computer Science department at Caltech. Mark is currently working in Pixar's Research Group on projects ranging from character articulation to lighting acceleration. Mark's most recent work on hair simulation can be seen in Pixar's newest film, Brave.

Abstract: Creating rich and compelling characters in computer graphics presents a number of technical challenges, including the modeling, animation, and rendering of complex shapes, such as heads, hands, and clothing. Subdivision surfaces allow the creation of arbitrary topology, smooth surfaces as the limit of a series of subdivision steps starting from an initial control mesh.

This talk will focus on how we use subdivision surfaces to efficiently represent complicated, smooth, deformable surfaces. Specifically, we will discuss how we use advanced features of subdivision surfaces, such as semi-sharp creases and hierarchial detail, to produce both complex organic and inorganic shapes demanded by high-end feature films. We will also discuss how to efficiently render these surfaces using commodity graphics hardware.

Dr. Phil Sewell - Nottingham University (UK)

Title: Meshing for Unstructured Transmission Line Model, UTLM, Electromagnetic Simulations

Biography: Professor Phillip Sewell received the B.Sc. degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering (first-class honors) and Ph.D. degree from the University of Bath in 1988 and 1991, respectively. From 1991 to 1993, he was a Post-Doctoral Fellow with the University of Ancona, Ancona, Italy. In 1993, he became a Lecturer with the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, U.K. In 2001 and 2005, he became a Reader and Professor of Electromagnetics at the University of Nottingham and is a member of the George Green Institute for Electromagnetics Research.

Professor Sewell's research encompasses a broad range of activities centred upon electromagnetic simulations. Theoretical development of algorithms, both analytic and numerical, is pursued in conjunction with  investigations into the practical issues involved when these are applied to large-scale industrial problems, for example mesh generation and CAD repair, as well as efficient large-scale computer implementations on parallel platforms. Application of the techniques developed is primarily made in the fields of Electromagnetic Compatibility, EMC, with particular emphasis upon aerospace environments, and integrated photonics.

Abstract: This presentation will give an overview of the development of a Transmission Line Modelling method suitable for use with unstructured meshes, UTLM. The TLM approach decomposes a problem space into discrete cells and solutions evolve in the time domain by alternating cell-scatter and inter-cell connection operations. As a time domain algorithm the attractions of TLM are that it is an explicit time stepping algorithm and maybe most importantly, is provable stable before simulations are launched. The requirement of UTLM is that the unstructured mesh is Delaunay, although in practice, the key enabling feature of the approach for large-scale aerospace simulations is the embedding of fine features such as thin panels and wiring which cannot be meshed directly. In particular,  the talk will discuss the close-interaction between the mesh characteristics, both in general and in the proximity of fine features, and the performance of the simulation algorithm.

Dr. Ted Blacker - Sandia National Laboratories

Title: Ted Blacker, Sandia National Laboratories

Biography:  Dr. Ted Blacker has been active in the effort to automate engineering simulations for most of his career. He joined Sandia National Labs in 1983 with an M.S. degree from BYU. Initial successes in improving modeling times, namely in automating existing 2D meshing algorithms led to the break-through paving technology for all-quad meshing of arbitrary surfaces. This technology eventually won an R&D 100 award in 1992. Ted established the CUBIT project at Sandia, a successful and vibrant pre-processing research and development effort now in its 24th year. He also founded the Meshing Roundtable conference now in its 22nd year. Ted completed his Ph.D. at Northwestern, worked in private industry for Fluent, Inc., for eight years and then returned to SNL to manage CUBIT and related programs. He has published extensively, holds a number of patents, served on temporary assignment to the DoD CREATE program in Washington D.C., and currently manages a department with several HPC computational analysis development teams.

Abstract: To Infinity and Beyond – Moving Simulation Modeling Sciences Forward

In the animated movie “Toy Story”, the character Buzz Lightyear provides an inspiring perspective - that the world is ripe to exploration and adventure and that we should be at the forefront of the challenge.  In many ways, the rich history of the International Meshing Roundtable (IMR), the actually realized impact to date of accomplishments in this field, and the yet to be unfolded impact of our technology reflects this theme: To Infinity and Beyond. This presentation is designed to lift our eyes, at least momentarily, from the daily grind of programming and help us to really understand and appreciate the rich environment and opportunities that our field of endeavor provides. I will propose a new name for this effort, Simulation Modeling Sciences, and then attempt to justify this bold title. This characterization will be defended with a review of the role of our work in the engineering community, an examination of the cross cutting sciences that must come together for the adventure to truly unfold, and a reasonably deep dive into technology that I think is either under-appreciated and under-developed (gold left in the mine as it were) or on the brink of leading us into the future. I’ll include in this presentation a view of how I believe this community should be stepping up, including embracing new technical directions, engaging in broad collaborative efforts and providing the science needed for the broader mission. I’ll conclude with a challenge to leave a rich legacy and an invitation for the conference attendees and organizers to continue the quest: To Infinity and Beyond.


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