“Fake” 3D



Videos produced from single observed images plus 3D effects can lead to stunning effects. Unfortunately, usually there is no scientific basis for the 3D structure that is shown.

My feeling about the topic of this blog entry is very ambiguous. It´s about the techniques to generate 3D-like animations of nebulae, which don´t use actual scientific 3D information. The result is often rather beautiful and sometimes makes us believe that a 3D view of a real nebula is being revealed and the camera is flying through or around it. But when you follow the online tutorials for them, you find that these animations are closer to a piece of 3D art than to science. What troubles me is that a lot of people who watch the resulting movies probably believe that it is the real deal, true science. It´s not. But is it alright if it produces a Wow-effect in the public and might help awake an interest in science in a few kids? What is o.k. and what is not? What are your thoughts on this (don´t hesitate to add comments to this blog entry)? Here is how it´s done and my current view of it. Continue reading


Flashback: 3D precessing radio jets


The northern radio jet of Hydra A as observed (left) and simulated with relativistic 3D hydrodynamics (Nawaz et al, 2016).

3D hydrodynamic simulations are becoming – sort of – mainstream and can include a lot of atomic physics, especially during post-processing for radiation transfer. Comparing and adjusting them to the details of observations is becoming possible especially with more powerful visualization software, as has been shown very impressively by a recent publication on precessing relativistic jets. While reading the paper by Nawaz et al. (2016) on the radio jets in Hydra A, I had a flashback that took me to the beginning of the Nineties and even to the days of the “Apple II”, 1982. But first a bit more on the work on Hydra A. Continue reading