How to display Material Areas?

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.

"Material Areas" 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 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

1. Layer 

Layer where elements that define the material areas are.

2. Materials 

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

3. Description

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

4. Group

Click on group to choose from a list of existing groups / sub groups or manually enter your group structure. Use the "/" character to create additional sub groups. For example: Existing/Office/Parking Lot.

5. Origin

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

6. Scale

Scale controls the scale of the texture.

7. Info text 

Information text allows 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.

8. Info URL 

Info URL allows to add hyperlinks such as a link to manufacturers homepage or a design documentation. The info URL link will be accessible in MAGNET Explorer via the Object Info tool.

9. Rotation

Rotation controls the rotation of the texture.

10. Interpolate

Interpolate defines whether the elevation of the String / Polyline (No) or the elevation of a reference surface (Yes) will be used. You have to have a Surface Model rule in place to drape the texture onto the surface.

11. 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 first segment of material area polyline and scaled so that it will fit / cover the whole material area

12. 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 underlying surface on top of it
  • patch = creates an optimized patch surface on top of the underlying surface. Optimized surface has much less triangles and is very suitable for road markings.

13. 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.

14. Edge_material

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

15. Flatten

Flatten is relevant when you want to project your Material Area onto a surface. (Yes)will flatten the projected area while (No) will leave it in the draped state. This mode is particularly useful for water areas.

16. Buffer

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

17. Target_layers

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

18. 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).

19. 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 divides arcs of a String / Polyline for a smoother interaction with a surface when draped.