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Name this fancy chart
March 30, 2008 2:35 PM   Subscribe

Is there a special name for a this type of chart, in this case it is one showing the nuclear fuel recycling capability of a CANDU reactor? Or do I just call it a flowchart, that happens to have a very visually appealing way of showing a complex cycle?
posted by Space Coyote to Science & Nature (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
Also if anyone can point to other examples of similar charts I'd be curious to see those as well.
posted by Space Coyote at 2:39 PM on March 30, 2008


I'd think they are just called cyclic graphs. Examples: nitrogen fixation cycle, citric acid cycle, water cycle.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 2:58 PM on March 30, 2008


The term "flowchart" usually implies time sequence. It's procedural. What you're looking at there isn't really a flow chart.

In software, the thing that's comparable to this is a "data flow diagram". That's a static view of the system that shows where data movess, without implying anything about time sequence.

As to your example, I'd refer to it as a "process flow diagram", but that's not an official term so far as I know.
posted by Class Goat at 3:17 PM on March 30, 2008


It’s definitely a type of flow diagram. One of the best books on information graphics is: Information Graphics: A Comprehensive Illustrated Reference. From this google book search, this diagram in the middle of page 155 has a similar style to the CANDU fuel cycle diagram. Also, Sankey digrams which are a type of flow diagram are drawn in a similar style.
posted by Jasper Friendly Bear at 4:39 PM on March 30, 2008


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