Feature Focus

June 22, 2009

Using the standard temperature color map does not guarantee that white is 0°C

True color temperature automatically centers the color map on zero, so we see more red than blue

Our improved color mapping features add a lot of power to SVOffice 2009, but it can mislead if not used properly. The Temperature colormap is a good example of this. The total range of colors available is not symmetrical, which means that your temperature's "white point" is not actually centered. Have a look at the screenshots above, taken from the MineStopes > B212_Side.SVM model: the one on the left uses the standard temperature color map, which defines a full range of black-body temperature colors from 1000K to 10000K. The standard "white point" is defined as 6500K, which ends up at about -0.3°C, so the user will think the freezing point in the model is higher than it actually is!

Now look at the right-side screenshot. This one uses the True Temperature colormap, which is designed to automatically center the colors based on your actual data. Now we see 0°C as white where it is supposed to be. We lose some of our dynamic range of colors but the model is now accurate and easy to interpret.

Why not use True Temperature all the time?

The above example shows one downfall of using the original temperature colormap, but that doesn't mean it has no use. Have a look at our next example, available from SVOffice 2009 as Foundations > HouseFoundation.SVM:

True color temperature is accurate, but provides minimal information about the model

Standard color temperature uses the full range of colors to reveal significant features

As expected, the true temperature color map on the left is all red, since our temperatures are all positive. Unfortunately, there is so much red that the results are harder to interpret. By switching to a "false" color map, as shown on the right, we reveal key characteristics of our model: the roof is not as hot as the interior floor, for example. This is good to know! The true temperature color map, while more scientifically accurate, is not as easy to interpret in this case.

By introducing better color maps to SVOffice 2009, you have more power to visualize your data the way you need to. Which temperature colormap is right for you? It all depends on what you need to see: the choice is yours!

For more information on this feature, feel free to contact us directly, or download our student version and try it out for yourself!

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