Skipping Steps in Deformable Simulation with Online Model Reduction

Appearing in SIGGRAPH Asia 2009

The head model is courtesy of Scott Wells.
Theodore Kim
University of Saskatchewan and
Cornell University
Doug James
Cornell University

Finite element simulations of nonlinear deformable models are computationally costly, routinely taking hours or days to compute the motion of detailed meshes. Dimensional model reduction can make simulations orders of magnitude faster, but is unsuitable for general deformable body simulations because it requires expensive precomputations, and it can suppress motion that lies outside the span of a pre-specified low-rank basis. We present an online model reduction method that does not have these limitations. In lieu of precomputation, we analyze the motion of the full model as the simulation progresses, incrementally building a reduced-order nonlinear model, and detecting when our reduced model is capable of performing the next timestep. For these subspace steps, full-model computation is "skipped" and replaced with a very fast (on the order of milliseconds) reduced order step. We present algorithms for both dynamic and quasistatic simulations, and a "throttle" parameter that allows a user to trade off between faster, approximate previews and slower, more conservative results. For detailed meshes undergoing low-rank motion, we have observed speedups of over an order of magnitude with our method.

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