Numerical and variational aspects of mesh parameterization and editing
A surface parameterization is a smooth one-to-one mapping between the surface and a parametric domain. Typically, surfaces with disk topology are mapped onto the plane and genus-zero surfaces onto the sphere. As any attempt to flatten a non-trivial surface onto the plane will inevitably induce a certain amount of distortion, the main concern of research on this topic is to minimize parametric distortion. This thesis aims at presenting a balanced blend of mathematical rigor and engineering intuition to address the challenges raised by the mesh parameterization problem. We study the numerical aspects of mesh parameterization in the light of parallel developments in both mathematics and engineering. Furthermore, we introduce the concept of quasi-harmonic maps for reducing distortion in the fixed boundary case and extend it to both the free boundary and the spherical case. Thinking of parameterization in a more general sense as the construction of one or several scalar fields on a surface, we explore the potential of this construction for mesh deformation and surface matching. We propose an ''on-surface parameterization'' for guiding the deformation process and performing surface matching. A direct harmonic interpolation in the quaternion domain is also shown to give promising results for deformation transfer.