Tracking Surfaces with Evolving Topology

Our method recovers a sequence of high-quality, temporally coherent triangle meshes from any sequence of closed surfaces with arbitrarily changing topology. We reliably extract correspondences from a level set and track textures backwards through a fluid simulation.


ACM Transactions on Graphics 31(4) (SIGGRAPH 2012)


We present a method for recovering a temporally coherent, deforming triangle mesh with arbitrarily changing topology from an incoherent sequence of static closed surfaces. We solve this problem using the surface geometry alone, without any prior information like surface templates or velocity fields. Our system combines a proven strategy for triangle mesh improvement, a robust multi-resolution non-rigid registration routine, and a reliable technique for changing surface mesh topology. We also introduce a novel topological constraint enforcement algorithm to ensure that the output and input always have similar topology. We apply our technique to a series of diverse input data from video reconstructions, physics simulations, and artistic morphs. The structured output of our algorithm allows us to efficiently track information like colors and displacement maps, recover velocity information, and solve PDEs on the mesh as a post process.

Supplementary video



author = {Morten Bojsen-Hansen and Hao Li and Chris Wojtan},
title = {Tracking Surfaces with Evolving Topology},
journal = {ACM Transactions on Graphics (SIGGRAPH 2012)},
year = {2012},
volume = {31},
number = {4},
pages = {53:1--53:10}


We would like to thank Xiaochen Hu for implementing mesh conversion tools, Duygu Ceylan for helping with the rendering, and Art Tevs for the human performance data comparison. We also thank Nils Thuerey and Christopher Batty for helpful discussions. This work is supported by the SNF fellowship PBEZP2-134464.