With an original positioning across Computer Graphics and Computational Mechanics, the ELAN team strives to simulate the physics of visually rich mechanical phenomena, such as cloth folding, ribbon coiling, plant growth, granular flowing, or hair entangling. Target applications encompass the digital entertainment industry (e.g., feature film animation, special effects), as well as virtual prototyping for the mechanical engineering industry (e.g., aircraft manufacturing, cosmetology); though very different, these two application fields require predictive and scalable models for capturing complex mechanical phenomena at the macroscopic scale. An orthogonal objective is the improvement of our understanding of natural physical and biological processes involving slender structures (such as plant growth, granular flows, DNA supercoiling), through active collaborations with soft matter physicists. To achieve its goals, the team is striving to master as finely as possible the entire modeling pipeline, involving a pluridisciplinary combination of scientific skills across Mechanics and Physics, Applied Mathematics, and Computer Science.
The ELAN team is focussed on three main research axes:
- The numerical modeling of slender elastic structures (rods, plates, and shells), especially when prone to large displacements and buckling
- The discrete handling of frictional contact problems, within the framework of nonsmooth contact mechanics
- The modeling, analysis and solving of inverse elastic design problems with applications in non-invasive parameter estimation.
Together with Basile Audoly (CNRS – École Polytechnique), the ELAN team is organizing GRAPHYZ, the first Graphics-Physics workshop (funded by the ERC project GEM). It will be held in Grenoble on 24 and 25 October 2019.
A wonderful program, gathering experts from graphics simulation and mechanics/physics, will favor interactions between the two communities.