Vulcan - Remove Internal Walls | Mining University

Vulcan - Remove Internal Walls

Maptek sent out their newsletter 'Tech Source' yesterday.  The current edition advertises the new menu option 'Delete Internal Walls.'  This is an option that I have been wanting for a long time now.  In Vulcan, it has always been easy to cut a triangulation into smaller pieces, but to put them back together again is a complex procedure that is often not worth the effort.  The idea behind the 'Delete Internal Walls' option would greatly simplify the task of combining triangulations that share a side but which need to be valid in order to calculate volumes or reserves.

There are three reasons that I typically want to 'Delete Internal Walls' and they all have to do with triangulations that have been split and then appended together again.  The first scenario involves simply cutting a triangulation (Model > Triangle Utility > Cut).  For whatever reason, I have both parts of the triangulations but not the original  and want to combine the parts into a complete whole.  Removing the internal walls in this simple situation can be done using a tool that Vulcan has had for a long time, Model > Triangle Solid > Delete Triangle > Internal Wall Delete.  The new option also does a good job in this situation but I don't really need it, there is something very similar in my tool set.

The second situation where walls might need to be deleted is when a triangulation has been split into many parts using the Model > Triangle Solid > Shells option.  I frequently use this option to split a pit solid into bench triangulations.  When many triangulations have been appended together the old 'Internal Wall Delete' option would technically work, but it would be labor intensive and might never make a valid triangulation. 

I had great hopes for the new option in this situation.  Unfortunately, when running tests on my triangulations I ran into some old Vulcan problems.  In one test the triangulation closed to a small portion of the original volume and in another test the internal walls were still present.  Either way I don't have a valid triangulation that I can use for volume or mass calculations.

Finally, the ability to append touching triangulations would be very useful in order to combine pushbacks in a given pit.  These pushbacks are, by definition, sharing triangle facets.  The appended solid triangulation is extremely complex, requiring an automated method of repair.  When I tested this option, it ran for several minutes and then crashed Vulcan.

The idea behind the 'Delete Internal Walls' option is terrific, but the result fell short.  I can't help but wonder why the existing option wasn't improved and expanded, instead of creating a new option that does almost the same thing.  Perhaps in future versions this option can be enhanced to be more robust at fixing triangulations.


  1. I always don't like Vulcan's engine for creating triangulation. Even more, the Boolean function just horrible. Have you ever compared it with Minesight?

  2. Anonymous,
    I have never had the chance to work with the Minesight triangulation tools. I think you can always make any tool better and would love the opportunity to learn more about other mining software packages.