Depths? - satellite DEPTH data? - My routes - New approach.

General question for Sail Simulator (raising sails, pulling sheets, etc.)

Depths? - satellite DEPTH data? - My routes - New approach.

Postby Barry » Tue 08 Aug 2006 - 13:33

Depths? - satellite DEPTH data? - different approach to my sceneries.

With apparently so few people making sceneries, or posting, I don't know if this post will get any feedback, but no matter.
With srtm2 data although the resolution is fairly coarse, by using it in conjuction with the Stentec Dem. Editor, a reasonable result is obtained.
With most of my sceneries available for download they are about 50 to 60 miles, which I think now is far too big for much accuracy.

So decided on a different tactic from now on.
Although I was going to leave future scenery making until the "possible" appearance of a new Scenery Designer/Dem Editor and SS5, and I had made a detour into into Virtual Sailor scenery making,
However I think, after much experimenting, that the Stentec Scenery Designer/Dem Editor, in conjuction with srtm2 data, is more suited to my requirements now..

So started afresh and started with remaking the Conway and Menai Straits scenery.
The difference being, the MAXIMUM scenery size now being 50 kilometres approx., which will give a pixel size of about 25 metres.
This allows for finer tuning of rivers and creeks and also for finer control of depths, and very small missing islets can be added by hand.

This size as regards a sailing simulator I think is large enough at say an average speed of say 10 miles and hour, for small sailing ships will give several hours relistic sailing, probably double that as rivers and creeks can be several miles long. 5 to 20 miles in some cases. Much more if tides appear and waiting for the tide to get ovet the "bar" sand banks into the rivers, etc.

Will be adding ALL rivers and creeks however small. If I can find them on a map.
Not racing as that is a seperate issue, as in future plenty of realistic sandbanks shallows, and rocks at least in my sceneries.

If anyone knows how to use satellite data DEPTHS, (if there are any free relevant to Europe), in conjunction with the the srtm2 terrain please post. This is the sticking point now trying to get some realistic depths , without spending a huge amount of time in the process.

To make sceneries of many parts of the world is now fairly easy, (at least the terrain part), using srtm2 satellite data.which is free to download. (see my site for tutorial). What takes the time is adding depths. Even adding the scenery 3D content is faily easy and you can make any bits and pieces, including rocks,etc as you go along. Post on forum for further details or see my site.

The Menai Straits, North Wales has a very strong current of up to 8 knots, and in the middle section there is a rocky dangerous area called the Swellies, between the 2 suspension bridges. This is just an example of the sorts of feautures that I need to place for realism, even though my sceneries are set in c1800 (give ot take a few decades).

As always post on the forum if you want any help, but in return please post any RELEVANT feedback and discusion.

Barry
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Postby ED50 » Tue 08 Aug 2006 - 20:33

Hi Barry,
good to see that you are still active here.

I was very busy to finish my scenery in the past therefore I take a look about your posts but I havn't found the time to tryout the results of your research.

Am I right that the satelite data is correct for all highs above sea level but not for the under sea level?

The background of my quetion is that I have the idea to create a scenery of Flensburger Förde (Flensborg Fjord). It could be helpful to use satelite data for that but I have no expirence here.

Bye
Ralf
http://www.ed50.de
ed50_sail_sim(at)yahoo.de {(at)=@ to avoid spam mails}
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Postby Barry » Wed 09 Aug 2006 - 00:02

Hi Ralph.

srtm2 dta works better for hilly or mountainous lands.
The heights are about right but the satellite data does not pick up very narrow rivers and islets.

In 3dem the water is set to 0 height by default but is variable if you wish.
By making no data 0 in the scenery dem editor, this then removes all the 0 height water, and you have a pink dem in place of water to lay depths.

There are ways to open up rivers, by drawing a box around area and set no data to say 5 metres if that is the height of the river in that area, etc, and you can place small islets by hand by reference to charts, etc. The satellite data does not photo areas under 150 metres I think but as used with dem editor you can work in smaller pixel sizes, and finer depths.

Best way to start is download the free 3DEM and open up up a few test srtm2 files which are easy to download, convert file with virtual terrain which then will load into the Stentec Dem Editor.

Tutorial and links etc on my site and as always. Just post and will try and help if you get stuck.

Jeroen from Stentec posted on the forum a while ago the procedure to use, otherwise would still not know how to use it.
There are about 5 seperate steps - open with 3DEM and change to
UTM - load into Virtual Terrain to make the bt.file. load into Dem Editor and when you finish change to Scene projection and trim off any no data edges (pink).

Thanks

Barry
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Postby artpier » Fri 04 Jan 2008 - 04:34

Hi again Barry.

I know this is a very delayed response to your post about anybody making scenery, but I'm a newbie so here goes.
I'm in the process of making a set of sceneries for Puget Sound In the Northwest corner of the US. It is very fjord like in nature so I'm having two problems.
1 Is there any way to add large numbers of trees to a scenery with out killing it?
2 How does one place the various navaids correctly?

Oh and a third minor problem; Is there any practcal way to include surrounding scenery (mountains,etc.). I know this can be gotten around by limiting the visiblity but that's no fun.
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Postby Barry » Fri 04 Jan 2008 - 12:46

artpier wrote:Hi again Barry.

I know this is a very delayed response to your post about anybody making scenery, but I'm a newbie so here goes.
I'm in the process of making a set of sceneries for Puget Sound In the Northwest corner of the US. It is very fjord like in nature so I'm having two problems.
1 Is there any way to add large numbers of trees to a scenery with out killing it?
2 How does one place the various navaids correctly?

Oh and a third minor problem; Is there any practcal way to include surrounding scenery (mountains,etc.). I know this can be gotten around by limiting the visiblity but that's no fun.


Hi. I posted on the other thread about trees.

With mountains I use satellite data and and these do not seem to effect the frame rates to much, whether its flat or mountains. Would be the same if putting the height lines in by hand.

I think only a certain amount of scenery is in computer memory at any one time.
Say 50 miles square with all mountains.
However I think the sailsim is more limited than motorboat sim and not sure if it works best up to 30 miles?

Even if just floating seem to hammer the frame rates as I think each boat is calculated as actually sailing by computer in sailsim 4.2?

Also the more content you add will effect the frame rates, although have many miles of docks in one of my routes but must admit frame rates are fairly low on that one.

Can't help with navaids as my sceneries are around 1800. Easier that way :wink:

Barry
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Postby artpier » Fri 04 Jan 2008 - 17:54

Thanks for responding. My problem with mountains is we have one very big one visible from most anywhere on th sound, and a smaller clump of mountains located on the Northwest edge of the shore, and rising to between 5-8000 ft.. They are both very prominent. I remember seeing a "Sky dome." Was that on your site? Could you like paint a picture on the sky to make it visible?
How about buildings shaped like trees. I've downloaded something to simulate city blocks that is one object made up to look like many houses or buildings. Would it be possible to build a forest that way. Maybe I should be trying this instead of asking about it. Just trying to avoid reinventing.
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Postby Barry » Fri 04 Jan 2008 - 23:25

artpier wrote:Thanks for responding. My problem with mountains is we have one very big one visible from most anywhere on th sound, and a smaller clump of mountains located on the Northwest edge of the shore, and rising to between 5-8000 ft.. They are both very prominent. I remember seeing a "Sky dome." Was that on your site? Could you like paint a picture on the sky to make it visible?
How about buildings shaped like trees. I've downloaded something to simulate city blocks that is one object made up to look like many houses or buildings. Would it be possible to build a forest that way. Maybe I should be trying this instead of asking about it. Just trying to avoid reinventing.


Sky dome was on Altugs site. Large semicircular dome to give the sky a deeper blue colour, but more for small routes. You can download it I think. See www.sailsimulator.com for links or see their posts.

You can make trees as tapered cones as seperate objects with Blender if you just want a few. For woods and forests you need flat pictures as 32 bit textures. Should be available in SS5 I would think.

Also have a look at Ralphs ED50, route (download) as he has some single trees made as an object or make a few in Blender. Just a cylinder, extrude and taper, and use a tree texture, and a cylinder for the trunk if you want one. Duplicate for a few. To make woods and forests would be heavy on frame rates making trees that way.

You can put any image you want on blocks etc.
Pictures of treelines or whatever, but trees need to look tapered and treelines need to look like lines of trees otherwise not very realistic.

You can probabably have as many trees and tree backdrops as you want with the 32 bit texture, and alpha just a picture on a flat sheet and that does nor need much computer memory.

I probably have hundreds in some of my routes but needs m/b sim to see them. I have sailsim but they just look like a picture of trees on a black flat sheet in that. Black is invisible in m/b sim and maybe SS5 with the alpha texture.

Perhaps Stentec will give more details,but I have no idea now when SS5 will be out now.

Re mountains if using the scenery designer you can trace map countour lines, or use sateliite data if available for that area. You can make also make objects a mile or 2 high in Blender.
I have Snowdon in one of mine. Highest mountain in Wales. Just trace the contour lines of map image or satellite data.

What method are you using to make the route. By hand or satellite. Full Scenery Designer?
I had the satellite tutorial on my site but took it off as nothing works with Vista for scenery making. OK for XP.

Objects read the image. You can replace a texture with another on say a block. but it would need to be exactly the same size and and same name. bmp for bmp, or tga for tga.


Also see
www.sailsimulator.com/
user made for downloads and links, etc, or their posts.

Barry
----------------------
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Postby Barry » Sat 05 Jan 2008 - 01:27

As an example tried a treeline without alpha but not so good as the alpha texture, as it is more jagged.

You have to join the vertices to make triangles, so about 25 polygons x 2 as double sided texture.


Made it about 100 metres x 20 metres but you can make them any size and you could make groups or whatever by joining in Blender, but harder to place then if ground isn't flat.

Put on any image you want cropped from photos etc.
Also you can resize in Object Editor.

Shown in Object Editor.

Barry




Image
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Postby artpier » Sat 05 Jan 2008 - 16:56

The picture on the Saturday post is like what I want I think. That was just photos cropped and pasted onto tree shaped objects? They aren't 3d are they. It looks like it would work for the hills.

I'm not sure what you mean by a "route." I'm building the southern end of Puget Sound. Probably covers about 10-15 miles. Easy to spend most of the day sailing there. I have the land and the soundings done, but it just doesn't look right without trees and foliage (they wouldn't let me use the word for unclothed that starts with a N.).

I don't know how familiar you are with this area. It's a lot like Norway. long, deep bays,and mountainous terrain.Actually a beautiful area for sailing (except of course, now. Its pouring rain and 37degrees F.)
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Postby artpier » Sat 05 Jan 2008 - 17:07

I probably should say I'm using DEM data from the net. I think I'm using the "full" designer. It came with the software when I bought it. Sure would like to get in on that beta test.
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Postby Barry » Sat 05 Jan 2008 - 23:33

The trees is just a flat shape which I shaped around the outline of the tree photo section, made in Blender.
Route/scenery.

You can just trace the contours from a map image to make the fiord and mountain shape. Just run the height line along the main contour map lines.

If using srtm2 data (not sure if available for your area, you crop the section and work through the sequence I detailed in the tutorial).


srtm2 data. SRTM V2 paragraph has the link.

http://www2.jpl.nasa.gov/srtm/index.html

If it covers your area could put the tutorial back on my site, but no good for Vista.
However don't think it includes your area?

Mine is the Europe folder for the UK.

Incidentally the full scenery designer is bought seperate or comes in the plus version on disc.
Have you generated the terrain, etc, saved and installed in sailsim to test it, as the demo test version that comes with the ordinary version I don't think will save?



Barry
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Postby artpier » Sun 06 Jan 2008 - 03:23

I must have the full version. I've been sailing onit for about a month or more. I.m using what they call 3 meter DEMs. I understand thats a 3mtr resolution. Guess maybe a number of layers of the flat trees will give the illusion of forest covered hills.
IO seem to remember one of the three different programs you have to use, one of them indicated Lat and Long when you move the mouse around., but I can't seem to find the switch again. If I can get the scenery builder, (where you place the objects, etc.) I can get the position of the navaids from the charts I'm using.
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Postby Barry » Sun 06 Jan 2008 - 04:09

NOT USABLE WITH VISTA!

Hi



I think srtm2 is 90 metre but works quite well when combined with the Scenery Designer to give a reasonable resolution.
Also you can open up blocked rivers etc by tracing the heights in the Scenry Designer and setting to no data etc.

Don't know anything about 3 metre resolution but may work the same.

You need 3DEM, Virtual Terrain to change to the bt file, and the full FULL Scenery Designer or it wont save I think on limited demo Scenery Designer that comes with the ordinary version.
Links for these are on the page and VT should be in the Scenery Designer.

If using it post and will try and help, but only from memory. I think only a few learnt how to use it Ralf ED50 and Altug, and a few others I know. Maybe others also but they don't post.


Barry

p.s 3dem was recently updated to also work with Vista.This opens the satellite file with all the heights, etc. set water to 0. then when set in SD to no-data you can lay the depths by hand, or whatever
Last edited by Barry on Wed 14 Jan 2009 - 13:54, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby artpier » Sun 06 Jan 2008 - 06:37

OK. How do I upload this? It's not complete. Only about 10-12 miles at the south end of the Sound where I live. There is about another 100 miles to do. I might eventually run up the whole Northwest coast, from here to Alaska. Hey I just had a thought. If Stentec allows traffic in 5.0 then I could add cruising whales. I sure hope this turns out as good as Microsoft Flight Sim. With that, you can fly anything anywhere. They even have people who hang out online to do virtual Air traffic control. They have like thousands of different planes and the whole world to fly in at least reasonable resolution.
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Postby Barry » Sun 06 Jan 2008 - 14:20

artpier wrote:OK. How do I upload this? It's not complete. Only about 10-12 miles at the south end of the Sound where I live. There is about another 100 miles to do. I might eventually run up the whole Northwest coast, from here to Alaska. Hey I just had a thought. If Stentec allows traffic in 5.0 then I could add cruising whales. I sure hope this turns out as good as Microsoft Flight Sim. With that, you can fly anything anywhere. They even have people who hang out online to do virtual Air traffic control. They have like thousands of different planes and the whole world to fly in at least reasonable resolution.


---------------------------------
Hi.

Stentec do not have an automatic facility to upload sceneries.

I have 12 on the Stentec web server though.
I put each on on my own site first and then emailed the Stentec help desk to see if they wished to put it on their web server.

They were very helpful so maybe just send an email to Stentec help desk, detailing the scenery, to see if they could put it on their web server.
If you don't have a web site for download perhaps could put it on disc and post it.

You make it as an ssp file them zip it with zip program.

Check it installs OK onto your own computer from the ssp file with the download manager.

Also I have updated the satellite tutorial on my site to include some details on Microdem.

I will give details in seperate thread.

If Stentec include the functions in SS5 and make it user friendly, I am sure we could make many sceneries. Same if they include the option to move other boats.

Depends how they set it up and if you can alter the configuration table for different boat effects. Whale shaped boats could work as long a the program doesn't know it isn't a boat.

I have used the a train simulator for a few years and made mainly drivable boats on fixed track on water.

Barry
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