The Visual Computer

, Volume 32, Issue 3, pp 403–413 | Cite as

EnergyViz: an interactive system for visualization of energy systems

  • Haleh AlemasoomEmail author
  • Faramarz Samavati
  • John Brosz
  • David Layzell
Original Article


Energy systems are under pressure to transform to address concerns about climate change. The modeling and visualization of energy systems can play an important role in communicating the costs, benefits and trade-offs of energy systems choices. We introduce EnergyViz, a visualization system that provides an interface for exploring time-varying, multi-attribute and spatial properties of a particular energy system. EnergyViz integrates several visualization techniques to facilitate exploration of a particular energy system. These techniques include flow diagram representation to show energy flow, 3D interaction with flow diagrams for expanding viewable data attributes such as emissions and an interactive map integrated with flow diagrams for simultaneous exploration of spatial and abstract information. We also perform level-of-detail exploration on flow diagrams and use smooth animation across the visualizations to represent time-varying data. Finally, we include evaluation results of EnergyViz collected from expert and inexperienced participants.


Energy system Visualization Flow Sankey diagram Time-varying Spatial Animation 



The authors would like to thank whatIf? Technologies Inc. (Ottawa, ON) for providing access to the data from their Canadian Energy Systems Simulator (CanESS) model. Research funding was provided by Canada School of Energy and Environment and GRAND NCE.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Haleh Alemasoom
    • 1
    Email author
  • Faramarz Samavati
    • 1
  • John Brosz
    • 2
  • David Layzell
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of CalgaryCalgaryCanada
  2. 2.Libraries and Cultural ResourcesUniversity of CalgaryCalgaryCanada
  3. 3.Canadian Energy Systems Analysis Research (CESAR) InstituteCalgaryCanada

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