Journal Article

Using scientific visualization tools to facilitate analysis of multi-dimensional data from a spatially explicit, biophysical, individual-based model of marine fish early life history

Bernard A. Megrey, Sarah Hinckley and Elizabeth L. Dobbins

in ICES Journal of Marine Science

Published on behalf of ICES/CIEM

Volume 59, issue 1, pages 203-215
Published in print January 2002 | ISSN: 1054-3139
Published online January 2002 | e-ISSN: 1095-9289 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1006/jmsc.2001.1150
Using scientific visualization tools to facilitate analysis of multi-dimensional data from a spatially explicit, biophysical, individual-based model of marine fish early life history

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Individual-based models (IBM), as an ecological modeling paradigm, are being used widely in the analysis of fish populations in marine ecosystems. The flexibility and power of IBMs with respect to building detailed and realistic biological models have encouraged recent and important extensions, which include explicit spatial dynamics and biophysical forcing of certain life stage processes. Unfortunately, the usefulness of individual-based numerical simulation models is often negated by the difficulty in digesting and analyzing their voluminous and complicated output. Scientific visualization tools offer the capability to remedy this problem.

In this paper we briefly describe our spatially explicit, biophysical, individual-based model, its data input and output characteristics and the off-the-shelf visualization tools we used to help facilitate analysis and interpretation of the model. A stand-alone, easy-to-use, post-processing, graphic user interface is described that permits rapid examination and integrated visualization of multi-dimensional model output. Specific examples are provided showing how scientific visualization, as a research tool, provided valuable assistance in untangling complex model dynamics, assisted with diagnostic analyses related to model validation, helped investigate trends, and apparent oddities in the data, and facilitated the communication of model results.

Keywords: biophysical simulation model; data visualization; fish larvae; scientific computing

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Environmental Science ; Marine and Estuarine Biology

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