Tag: Leapfrog

Modelling with the offset surface tool

By Jason McIntosh

Leapfrog has a new surface modelling tool available in the Geological modelling toolset! The offset surface tool will be available to users who have the latest version of Leapfrog Geo or Geothermal. It’s designed to enable a greater degree of flexibility when modelling complex stratified geology, particularly from heterogeneous data. The offset surface tool appropriates all the current dynamic functionality available in the existing geological modelling surface options.

So how can the new tool be used to model such deposits? Users of Geo 2.2.1 and earlier may already be familiar with the existing offset tool that was located in the meshes folder. The new tool incorporates much of the same functionality but supersedes the earlier version with improved algorithms and additional editing options. The new functionality is well suited for modelling faulted, stratified deposits.

Folded and faulted offset surface stratigraphy.

Folded and faulted offset surface stratigraphy.

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Making the most of Leapfrog for flow modelling: Part 2

By Jason McIntosh

Continued from part 1 – Making the most of Leapfrog for Flow Modelling.

Generate and evaluate a finite element grid

Finally to generate a FEFLOW model right click ‘Flow Models’ in the project tree and select ‘New 2D FEFLOW Model’. Set the element size and boundary from either a GIS line, polyline or a GM. Next expand the grid, right click ‘grid’ and select ‘New feature’. Within the dialogue add any ‘Point’, ‘Line’ or ‘Polygon’ features you wish to refine the grid with. Select ‘Simplify Feature’ to reduce or increase the number of points used for the boundary prisms. Next double click the grid, in the ‘Features’ tab and activate any features you wish to build detail around and the number of refinement steps. Within the ‘Boundary’ tab select either a rectangular boundary or a custom boundary by selecting ‘From another object’.

2D FEFLOW grid with refined cells about the collar locations.

2D FEFLOW grid with refined cells about the collar locations.

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Making the most of Leapfrog for flow modelling: Part 1

By Jason McIntosh

Simulating fluid flow, mass and heat transfer requires the synthesis of geological models with a multitude of parameters, the process is complex. So how can Leapfrogs modelling functionality be used to streamline it? 

Interoperability with FEFLOW and MODFLOW allows Leapfrog Hydro, Geothermal and Hydrology module users to interpolate initial simulation parameters and apply them to geologically constrained finite element and finite difference grids. For the purpose of this blog I will demonstrate the capabilities by modelling an aquifer system in Leapfrog Geo, simulating it in FEFLOW and viewing the time series in Leapfrog.

Aquifer systems are comprised of permeable porous water bearing aquifers and impermeable aquitards. Both have variable permeability and porosity within the sedimentary units they are comprised of, the units themselves pinch-out and diverge within stratified layers of sediment. Stratified drift aquifers are among the most challenging of such systems, as a result of the complex depositional environments they derive from.

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The Leapfrog Team

This is the final history blog in a six part series – The Leapfrog Team. If you missed part five, Gaining Acceptance, you can find it here.

Many of the original development team still work for ARANZ Geo, all adding their substantial knowledge and experience to the mix.  Many joined as students in the early days to advance the RBF mathematics and software that is Leapfrog’s engine, FastRBF™.  ARANZ Geo founder, Rick Fright describes it as a ‘blend of expertise’ and a ‘combination of experts all at the top of their game’, many in between working at University College London or Cambridge University. Fundamentally the common theme was that they were Kiwi’s, many friends from the University of Canterbury in New Zealand.

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Gaining acceptance

This is the fifth history blog in a six part series. If you missed part four, Leapfrog’s Fast RBF™, you can find it here.

In 2004, following successful testing and use of the initial product by SRK Consulting, ARANZ Geo was formed to begin the marketing and further development of the product to the mining industry. Leapfrog Mining was born.

Too fast!

But in the early days Leapfrog® struggled to be accepted. Says Rick Fright, “People didn’t take it seriously because it was just too fast!  And it was too isotropic, it didn’t take into account folding strata.”

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Leapfrog’s Fast RBF™

This is the fourth history blog in a six part series – Leapfrog’s fast RBF. If you missed part three, Modelling in full 3D, you can find it here.

In 1999 work began on new surfacing algorithms so that an RBF implicit model could be utilised by conventional computer graphics packages. This meant converting an implicit RBF model into meshes of triangles and piecewise continuous spline surfaces.

The main difference between traditional RBF’s and what became ARANZ’s FastRBF™ is the ability to deal with large datasets of well over 1,000,000 points on ordinary computing hardware incredibly quickly. The maths used to speed up the calculation was initially used in particle physics. Filtering and approximation methods make Fast RBF™ ideal for visualising and processing non-uniformly sampled noisy data. FastRBF™ has extraordinary extrapolation capabilities, even when large gaps occur in a data set.

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Modelling in full 3D

This is the third history blog in a six part series – Modelling in full 3D. If you missed part two, Medicine, movies and outer space!, you can find it here.

In 1996 in pursuit of more mathematically robust meshes ARANZ rekindled their close collaboration with mathematician Rick Beatson. This motivated the extension of his fast RBF methods to modelling full 3D data and a new way of describing the surfaces of objects implicitly using a ‘signed-distance’ function.

Says ARANZ Geo founder Rick Fright, “Having got the scanner working, and gathered scattered point measurements from the surface of a 3D object, we realised we had an even bigger problem of reconstructing a complete and continuous surface model. So we got back in touch with Rick Beatson.”

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Medicine, movies and outer space!

Leapfrog in Medicine, Movies and Outer Space

This is the second history blog in a six part series. If you missed part one, In the beginning, you can find it here.

In 1995, the success of the 3D ultrasound and laser scanning research prompted Rick Fright to start Applied Research Associates Ltd (ARANZ) along with friend and former fellow student Bruce McCallum (Electrical Eng.), Mark Nixon (medical doctor) and Brent Price (from Med Physics). Together they hit on the idea of a hand-held portable laser scanner, which allowed almost any solid object’s surface to be acquired and represented, initially, as a mesh of triangles.

A hand-held portable laser scanner being used on a troll model for Lord of the Rings.

A hand-held portable laser scanner being used on a troll model for Lord of the Rings.

These meshes were adequate for many applications, including the movie industry, where the scanner was very successful in computer animation and utilised in numerous films from the Lord of the Rings trilogy to the Star Wars prequels.

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In the beginning

Leapfrog are excited to post for you a series of six blogs that map our company’s progress. To start off the first blog, Carrie Beckwith, talks to Rick Fright about how Leapfrog® came about – in the beginning.

The story Rick’s telling includes engineers, mathematicians, geologists  and computer science graduates, which he describes as a ‘unique blend of expertise’, many friends from the University of Canterbury in New Zealand and many still actively involved in taking the product forward. I’m marvelling at the man-hours Leapfrog’s development must have accrued and the ‘ground breaking’ that went on to create the intuitive modelling tool geologists rely on today. Our conversation is unearthing a passion and excitement for developing new technology through research.

But how did this software first come about? How did something initially from the medical industry end up being so successful in mining?

In the beginning – titanium cranioplasty

Rick takes me back to 1991 and the Medical Physics & Bioengineering department of Canterbury Hospital in Christchurch New Zealand. Rick was working on a Wellcome Trust research grant to automate the design and production of titanium plates for neurosurgeons. Rick had heard about the work of another Rick (Beatson) a mathematician from the nearby University of Canterbury’s Department of Mathematics and Statistics, who’d developed new fast 2D methods using radial basis functions. At this time, Engineering Ph.D. student Jonathan Carr also became involved and the three set about solving the cranioplasty problem. Together they produced mathematics and software to interpolate the shape of the skull across the void of the missing area. This is basically the same way Leapfrog models topographies today.

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Optimum performance with Leapfrog projects

By Tim Schurr

Have you noticed the “.aproj_data” folder that always appears along-side your Leapfrog project file?

 aproj_data-folder in Leapfrog Geo

If you’ve ever had to move or copy a project to another location, you’ve probably come across it, opened folder using explorer and discovered a whole raft of sub-folders and files and thought “What’s all of this?  Is this really my Leapfrog project?”

.aproj_data folder beside Leapfrog project

In this article, I will explain the reason why Leapfrog saves projects in seemingly such a bizarre way, then I’ll give you a couple of tricks on how to get the best performance and reliability out of your Leapfrog projects.

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