Generalizing the “Base Case”

Generalizing the “Base Case”#

In this step, we’ll expand upon our simple “base case” and generalize the simulation script to be able to programmatically set the physical parameters of the simulation. We will achieve this through using Inductiva’s own Templating Engine.

What is Templating?#

Templating is a powerful tool that allows you to start with a specific simulation file – like our “base case” – containing fixed values for the parameters you wish to explore and transform those fixed values into variables that you can not change programmatically from your Python code before you submit the simulation for remote execution.

The power of templating happens through a simple substitution process. You replace the numeric or categorical values in your configuration file with placeholders in the following format {{ variable_name }}. This ensures that each occurrence of variable_name expression within the file is substituted with whatever value assigned to it.

For example, let’s say you embed variable = {{ value }} in your template and assign value = 10, when you render this template, the placeholder is replaced with the assigned value, resulting in variable = 10 in the final configuration file. This process not only generalizes your configuration file but also allows you to adjust the values of each variable programmatically via your Python script.

Now, let’s revisit our “base case” script to identify the parameters and values we want to “generalize”. The first step is to generalize the parameters directly related to the physical properties of the simulation case itself, like initial conditions, viscosity, or other physical description.

Generalizing Physical Parameters#

The key parameters we want to transform into variables include the fluid block’s dimensions, initial position and initial velocity. At the same time, we want to be able to change the density and viscosity of the fluid itself to create more diverse examples for our target ML task.

Let’s download our pre-configured template folder, and store it in a local directory.

If you recall, the configuration for our simulation, including the parameters we’re now making variable, are located in a JSON file and saved in the local directory as part of the download folder above.

For this dataset, we’re keeping the dimensions of the encasing box fixed to focus on how changes to the fluid block and its properties impact the simulation outcomes without introducing additional variables related to the surrounding environment.

Here’s an overview of how our templated configuration file looks like, keeping in mind some sensible defaults we’ve provided for each variable to ensure the simulation can run effectively.

    "Configuration": {
        "stopAt": 4,
        "timeStepSize": 0.001,
        "particleRadius": 0.008,
        "simulationMethod": 4,
        "boundaryHandlingMethod": 0,
        "kernel": 1,
        "cflMethod": 1,
        "cflFactor": 0.5,
        "cflMinTimeStepSize": 0.0001,
        "cflMaxTimeStepSize": 0.005,
        "gravitation": [0, 0, -9.81],
        "gradKernel": 1,
        "enableVTKExport": true,
        "dataExportFPS": 60,
        "particleAttributes": "velocity;density"
    "RigidBodies": [
            "geometryFile": "unit_box.obj",
            "translation": [0, 0, 0],
            "scale": [1, 1, 1],
            "isDynamic": false
    "Materials": [
            "id": "Fluid",
            "density0": {{ density | default(1000) }},
            "viscosity": {{ viscosity | default(1e-6) }},
            "viscosityMethod": 6
    "FluidModels": [
            "id": "Fluid",
            "particleFile": "unit_box.obj",
            "translation": {{ initial_position | default([0.05, 0.05, 0.45]) }},
            "scale": {{ dimensions | default([0.5, 0.5, 0.5]) }},
            "initialVelocity": {{ initial_velocity | default([0, 0, 0]) }}

After making these changes in our configuration file, executing our simulation with different parameters becomes remarkably straightforward.All it takes for this is to use Inductiva’s TemplateManager class. Look at the below script and see how we easily fill in the variables with values with the call to the TemplateManager.render_dir() method:

import inductiva

# Launch a machine group with a c3-standard-4
machine_group = inductiva.resources.MachineGroup("c3-standard-4")

# Set the path to the local directory where the template folder was downloaded
template_dir = "./splishsplash-template-dir"

# Specify the initial conditions for the fluid simulation and the fluid's properties
initial_velocity = [4, 0, 0]  # Example: A high horizontal initial speed m/s in the x direction 
kinematic_viscosity = 2       # Represents a fluid with higher viscosity m^2/s
density = 2500                # A denser fluid compared to water 1000 kg/m^3

# Define the directory where the rendered templates will appear filled 
# with the values of the variables defined above.
rendered_dir = "./splishsplash-viscous-fluid/"


# Initialize the simulator and run the simulation
SPlisHSPlasH = inductiva.simulators.SplishSplash()
task =,

# Wait for the simulation task to complete and download the results

# Ensure that the allocated resources are terminated
# This is crucial to avoid incurring unnecessary costs from lingering resources

The result looks something like this:

Video 2. Dynamics of a viscous fluid simulated with 26,600 particles performed using SPlisHSPlasH via the Inductiva API.

This is it! Inductiva’s templating mechanism enables us to simulate a variety of fluid behaviors (from modeling water to simulating another viscous fluid with horizontal velocity) using basically the same configuration file. It’s really as simple as it seems!

And now we are ready to go one step further to generalize the hyperparameters of the simulator, which directly affect the computational cost of the simulation. We will be focusing on two key hyperparameters: i) the size of the particles (which controls the number of particles used in the simulation) and ii) the iteration time step. These two hyperparameters impact significantly both the accuracy of our simulations and their associated costs.