Extending the virtual excavation

Complex models can be a little difficult to visualize, as element cluttering may impair easy visualization.  Transparency, wireframe rendering, selective display, clipping, etc. can all be used to make that task easier, but we thought of another way: what if we created a virtual hole on the surface of the walls of a complex building model, and selectively clipped some of the elements it intersects with?

We explored the idea, by extending the virtual excavation technique that we used for subsurface utility model visualization.  Take a look at our results:


As you could see, we selectively clip everything that intersects with the box, except a set of pipes.  We can therefore view the pipe without the cluttering, and the remaining surrounding element context (the rest of the model) facilitates the understanding of the relation between the pipe element and the rest of the model.

What do you think?  Would such a tool be useful in your work?  Would you use it for model exploration, easier navigation, or even to facilitate clash visualization?

Please write to me, or leave a comment below.  We love to read your comments!