This paper shows the application of Virtual Reality (VR) techniques to the construction of a prototype for visualization of finite element simulations of porous media flows in oil reservoirs. VR enables the immersion in the simulation world, allowing the inclusion of several data like porosity, permeability, pressure, etc, in any simulation element, on a single 3D graphic model.


"…The purpose of computing is insight, not numbers…" (Hamming, 1962). This work appeared as a natural unfolding of recent studies about the use of Virtual Reality techniques accomplished by Applied Virtual Reality Group (GRVa) of LAMCE in offshore applications (Santos et al., 1998), where a sea floor layout design to the Campos Basin-RJ was modeled, as illustrated below. "…Virtual Reality(VR) is not a new concept …", said Francis Balaguer (Balaguer et al., 1991), althrough the oxymoron "artificial reality" was introduced by Krueger in 1983 (Krueger, 1983). In 1965, the researcher Sutherland published in proceedings IFIP congress, the key concepts of immersion in a simulated world, and complete sensory input and output, which was and still is the basis of VR research. A virtual or simulated world is created based on threedimensional graphs and audio elements and it can be experimented in real time. VR is more than just interacting with 3D worlds. By offering simulation to users as interface metaphor, it allows operators to perform tasks on remote real worlds, computer generated worlds or any combination of both. The simulated world does not necessarily have to obey natural laws of behavior and it is not recorded previously: it is generated in real time by the computer as one navigates and interacts with it (Kirner, 1996). The most efficient experiences with VR approaches yourself to reality in such a way that the identification of real world is immediately.

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