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Simulation Workflows

FEM Bone

Simulation technology is indispensable for the solution of complex problems, be it in medical science, in development and production processes as well as in other domains of life. This has enormously influenced developments in economy and science. On the other hand, new developments in modeling and simulation technology as well as hardware components have increased the expectations in science and industry. This is the point the activities of the SimTech cluster join: The status quo with individual strategies of different disciplines, theories and discretization concepts is overcome. The concepts are merged and enhanced to a new class of an integrative simulation environment that covers all aspects ranging from a model to an interactive system, e.g. with the aid of simulation workflows. More ...

SimTech Cluster of Excellence

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The SimTech cluster of excellence concentrates on six research areas, ranging from molecular dynamics and modern mechanics over numerical mathematics and systems analysis to data management und interactive visualization as well as high performance computing.

Institute of Architecture of Application Systems (IAAS)


The IAAS is creating a workflow management system (WfMS) for modeling and executing simulation workflows. The WfMS will be especially tailored to requirements of scientists. The underlying technical complexity ought to be hidden for scientists to enable them to concentrate on their core competencies.

Workflow Technology for Simulations

Workflows in general are compositions of tasks by means of causal (control-flow) or data (data-flow) dependencies. They are executed on a computer with the aid of a workflow management system. Workflows have long been used to meet the needs of IT support for business processes. Recently, the importance of workflow technology has steadily increased more and more in the scientific domain and the terms e-science as well as scientific workflows have been constructed. This scientific workflow technology has been successfully applied in areas like biology, life science, astronomy or meteorology. It helps to automate as much as possible by hidden the underlying technical complexity for scientists, e.g. by creating directories, compiling source code, handling with huge amounts of data, or storing provenance information.
Simulation workflows are a special kind of scientific workflows. The simulations that are supported by simulation workflows contain data provisioning tasks and complex calculations, which are not typical for workflows from the business domain. Examples of those calculations are quantum mechanics equations or partial differential equations (PDE) that can be solved with the help of the finite element method (FEM) to determine temporal or spatial changes of simulated objects, e.g., of the structure of a human bone (see workflow in figure below).
The shown simulation workflow is divided into three phases. Within the preprocessing phase all needed input data and parameter will be collected. Furthermore, the simulation environment will be prepared and source code compiled, if necessary. At the solving phase complex calculations are carried out to solve equations coming from the FEM. At the postprocessing phase, result data are visualized and stored to reproduce the simulation.

Find out more about Simulation Workflows.

FEM Workflow