createTetgenSmeshFromRasters is a tool for creating a TetGen- *.smesh file from a 2D input VTK mesh and one or more raster files. The 2D input file is intended to define the upper surface of the resulting *.smesh, while the raster files are intended to describe the geologic layers below this surface. The resulting *.smesh file is a piecewise linear complex (PLC) that describes a boundary representation for a layered 3D mesh. This PLC serves as input to TetGen’s Tetrahedral Mesh Generator to create a 3D mesh. A more detailed explanation of the use and functionality of TetGen can be found in the manual. Supported raster formats are ArcGIS ASCII raster (*.asc), Surfer grids (*.grd), and XYZ raster files (*.xyz). Still, the list of raster files can be given in any text file format.

Known limitations

Currently, only inputs consisting of line and triangle elements are supported, as mapping quads may result in invalid grid elements.


createTetgenSmeshFromRasters  -i <file name> -o <file name> -r <file
                                     name> [-t <floating point number>]
                                     [--ascii_output] [--] [--version]


   -i <file name>,  --input-mesh-file <file name>
     (required)  The file name of the 2D input mesh.

   -o <file name>,  --output-mesh-file <file name>
     (required)  The file name of the resulting 3D mesh.

   -r <file name>,  --raster-list <file name>
     (required)  An ascii-file containing a list of raster files, starting
     from top (DEM) to bottom.

   -t <floating point number>,  --thickness <floating point number>
     The minimum thickness of a layer to be integrated at any given

     Write VTU output in ASCII format.

   --,  --ignore_rest
     Ignores the rest of the labeled arguments following this flag.

     Displays version information and exits.

   -h,  --help
     Displays usage information and exits.


createLayeredMeshFromRasters -i mesh.vtu -o mesh_layered.smesh -r list_rasters.txt

The text file that contains the list of raster files, in this example it is called “list_rasters.txt”, is specified as follows:


Note: If it is wanted to create a 3D mesh from the resulting mesh_layered.smesh file, it is recommended to use TetGen. It could be called like:

tetgen -pkA mesh_layered.smesh

The p takes care of the tetrahedralization, k takes care of the generation of a VTK output, and A writes cell properties for regions to the output mesh.

This article was written by Julian Heinze. If you are missing something or you find an error please let us know.
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