Colorado mountains
From Long-Term Data to Understanding: Toward a Predictive Ecology
2015 LTER ASM Estes Park, CO - August 30 - September 2, 2015

Visualizing Terrestrial and Aquatic Systems in 3D

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Poster Number: 
Presenter/Primary Author: 
Judith Cushing
Nik Stevenson-Molnar, Mike Bailey, Jenny Orr, Denise Lach, Patrick Wingo, Taylor Mutch, Vir Ratanasanpunth
Collaborators: Bob McKane, Christoph Thomas, John Bolte, Dominique Bachelet

Better visualization tools for environmental science is a well documented need, especially for use with the very large data sets produced by models that help predict ecological change.  The Visualization for Terrestrial and Aquatic Systems project (VISTAS) aims to help scientists produce effective environmental science visualizations and to determine which visualizations are most helpful to scientists and their stakeholders.   Focusing on 3D topographical visualizations, aiming to visualize across spatial and temporal scales, VISTAS software currently superimposes measured or modeled data on digital elevation models and allows side by side viewing of single frames, animations, or multiple images.  This poster presents visualizations of three collaborators whose data might be enhanced by visualizing each other’s data in “cross-scale visualizations”. VISTAS is an interdisciplinary project among computer, environmental, and social scientists; we work jointly to create effective software and evaluate visualizations, several of which are at the HJA LTER. 

VISTAS source and executable are freely available:

Please consider also visiting our working group, Tuesday 4-6, Longs Peak Diamond West, : 3D Scientific Visualization (Terrain Mapping) for ecological and environmental research and outreach.