Water Wave Packets

Water wave packets create fast, detailed, and unconditionally stable simulations of water surface waves.




ACM Transactions on Graphics 36(4) (SIGGRAPH 2017)


This paper presents a method for simulating water surface waves as a displacement field on a 2D domain. Our method relies on Lagrangian particles that carry packets of water wave energy; each packet carries information about an entire group of wave trains, as opposed to only a single wave crest. Our approach is unconditionally stable and can simulate high resolution geometric details. This approach also presents a straightforward interface for artistic control, because it is essentially a particle system with intuitive parameters like wavelength and amplitude. Our implementation parallelizes well and runs in real time for moderately challenging scenarios.

Supplementary video


author = {Stefan Jeschke and Chris Wojtan},
title = {Water Wave Packets},
journal = {ACM Transactions on Graphics (SIGGRAPH 2017)},
year = {2017},
volume = {36},
number = {4}


We wish to thank everyone who contributed to this paper, especially the anonymous reviewers, Camille Schreck and David Hahn for proof-reading the paper, and Reiner Prokein for creating the models used in our examples. This research was supported by the Scientific Service Units (SSU) of IST Austria through resources provided by Scientific Computing. This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement No 638176).