MAGNET Modeler: How to set up a material area rule

This article explains how to set up a material area rule in MAGNET Modeler.

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MAGNET Modeler: How to set up a material area rule

An important part of the modeling and visualization process of a project is to display existing and proposed areas as realistically as possible. Different colors or even real textures/materials allow everyone to get a better and more detailed understanding of the project.

The material area rule is a powerful and easy tool to perform this task for objects such as:

  • Parking lots
  • Roads
  • Water areas
  • Traffic islands
  • Parcels
  • Site equipment areas
  • Aerial images
  • Symbol images

Material areas are used to assign colors or material textures to certain areas inside the model. For material area model creation, MAGNET Modeler supports:

  • Closed strings
  • Closed polylines

Polygons, boundaries, pads, or lines have to be converted into strings or polylines first. 

Elevated polylines will be modeled as a flat surface by using the polylines elevation.

Elevated strings will be modeled as a flat surface as well by using the elevation of the first string vertex.

Both object types can be translated onto a reference surface and will follow the shape of the surface.


Material area rule parameters

•  Layer

Layer where elements that define the material area are.

•  Materials

Click materials to access the Material Library of MAGNET Modeler. Select an existing material, or insert a new material.

•  Description 

Enter a description for the material area rule. This will change the name of the rule within the Modeler Rules window. In case you have several material area rules, this helps to easily identify them.

•  Group 

Click group to choose from a list of existing groups/subgroups, or manually enter your group structure. Use the forward slash character (/) to create additional subgroups, for example, Existing/Office/Parking lot.

•  Origin 

Origin controls the relative coordinates for the upper-left corner of the texture.

•  Scale

Scale controls the scale of the texture.

•  Info text

Information text allows you to add additional information, such as material, quality requirements, and manufacturer. The info text information will be accessible in MAGNET Explorer via the Object Info tool.

•  Info URL

Info URL allows you to add hyperlinks such as a link to a manufacturer's homepage or a design document. The info URL link will be accessible in MAGNET Explorer via the Object Info tool.

•  Rotation

Rotation controls the rotation of the texture.

•  Interpolate

Interpolate defines whether the elevation of the string/polyline (selecting no) or the elevation of a reference surface (selecting yes) will be used. You have to have a surface model rule in place to drape the texture onto the surface.

•  automatic_texcoords

Automatic_texcoords defines how one single texture tile will be fitted into the perimeter of the string/polyline. This option is useful for orthoimagery.

  • Yes = The lower-left corner of the texture is put to the first vertex of the polygon. (The rotation is taken from first vertex > second vertex angle.)
  • Fit = Scales the texture so that it will be rotated along the first segment of the material area polyline and scaled so that it will fit/cover the whole material area.

•  Cut

Cut is relevant when you want to project your material area onto a surface.

  • Yes = Cuts the existing surface along the border line into the surface model.
  • No = Creates a copy of the underlying surface on top of it.
  • Patch = Creates an optimized patch surface on top of the underlying surface. The optimized surface has much fewer triangles and is very suitable for road markings.

•  Up_extrude 

Enter a value for up_extrude to extrude the material area up (positive value) or down (negative value). This is helpful to model objects such as traffic islands or curbs without physically adding breaklines to a surface.

•  Edge_material

Edge_material is relevant when up_extrude is set to a certain value. You can access the MAGNET Modeler Material Library and select a material for the extruded faces.

•  Flatten

Flatten is relevant when you want to project your material area onto a surface. Selecting yes will flatten the projected area, while selecting no will leave it in the draped state. This mode is particularly useful for water areas.

•  Buffer

Buffer is relevant when up_extrude is set to a certain value. A positive buffer thickens the extruded faces while a negative one shrinks them.

•  Target_layers

Target_layers is relevant when interpolate is set. You can choose whether the texture will only be projected onto a certain surface by selecting the surface from the layers list. The default value (*) means that all surfaces are affected.

•  Generation_priority

Generation_priority lets you determine the display order of overlapping material areas in the model.

  • 0 = Default/layer order
  • 1 = Generates after 0 
  • -1 = Generates before 0

•  Auto_segmentation_distance

Auto_segmentation_distance densifies the string/polyline. This parameter is useful for a smoother interaction with a surface when draped.

•  Auto_segmentation_angle

Auto_segmentation_angle divides arcs of a string/polyline for a smoother interaction with a surface when draped.