Innovate quantitative flow visualization

ProCap: A new world of quantitative flow visualization

Probe Capture (ProCap) is an innovative approach developed in collaboration with the Institute of Fluid Dynamics at ETH Zurich. It combines the simplicity and speed of a smoke probe with the information content of a 3D-point measurement scan.

For a ProCap measurement, the operator scans the region of interest by guiding a hand-held probe. The probe’s instantaneous position and orientation is tracked optically such that each measurement data point can be assigned with a position in space. By interpolating and visualizing the data in real-time an instantaneous feedback is provided to the operator, who can follow the progress of the measurement on a large screen. This human-based scanning approach proves to be very intuitive and efficient as the play instinct is triggered and in regions of interest the scanning is refined out of curiosity. No machine-teaching even for complex geometries is necessary. Both interpolated field and raw data is stored for later analysis and can be exported to current visualization tools.

It is specifically aimed at large-scale experiments and works also very well when working with athletes. It has been and continues to be tested for a wide range of applications and different facilities. This includes full-size automotive wind tunnels and the Twisted Flow Wind Tunnel (TFWT) in Auckland. With the hand-guided approach the maximum wind speed is evidently limited and there exist more accurate methods for a single point measurement. But for many applications, especially for complex geometries and measurements close to surfaces, this is the only method that provides full 3D-data within a reasonable time and cost budget.

Main features

  • Sub-millimeter optical tracking based on passive marker technology
  • 200 Hz tracking rate
  • Measurement volume of 1 m3 typical
  • Physically constrained interpolation in real-time with adaptive spatial resolution
  • Extensive visualization library: vectors, contour plane, isosurfaces, streamlines
  • VRPN supported
  • CAD model import (.stl)

A more detailed description can be found in our information leaflet.

Please do not hesitate to contact us regarding ProCap in your application.