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How to create a road network from scratch

In SCANeR, the simulation is composed of actors performing actions according to a scenario that has been created by the user. This scenario takes place in an environement we call the terrain of the scenario. There are default environments present in SCANeR default data set that you can use, but you can also create your own.

Note: If you already have specific environments, you can directly import these in SCANeR, or we can help you to replicate these as a service on demand. We also offer off-the-shelf complete and realistic environments such as the N118 around Paris or the Europe 2.0 environment. More information on: https://www.avsimulation.com/content-creation/.

A terrain is composed of road logical content, used by the actors to make their own decisions (thanks to SCANeR Traffic A.I.), and of a 3D representation of the roads, intersections and decorative elements.

In this guide, I will explain how to create a new environment composed of a simple intersection with traffic lights, to be used in your custom simulation.

After following these simple steps, you will be able to create any terrain you want, and enhance your experiments ๐Ÿ˜‰.

Letโ€™s jump into the guide!

Step 1. Start TERRAIN mode and create a new terrain file

  1. When you start SCANeR, it will start in SIMULATION mode by default. To switch to the TERRAIN mode, just click on the TERRAIN button in the top menu. A separate GUI will open, showing the TERRAIN mode UI.

    SCANeR modes

  2. Once TERRAIN mode is loaded, you can click on menu File\New or simply click on the Blank Page icon to create a new terrain

    New terrain 1 New terrain 2

Step 2. Create the road network and the 3D representation

  1. To create a new road, simply select the Insert Segment tool on the left side of the GUI, and click and drag your mouse to create the road you want in the main view. After you have drawn 2 segments composing your intersection, select one of them, right click and select Detect Intersection. You now have an intersetion from two roads ๐Ÿ‘.

Note: You can change the profile of the road, which means the number of lanes and their position, through the PROFILE workroom, but letโ€™s save that for another guide ๐Ÿ˜‰.

  1. In this step we will add realism to the terrain we just created by adding traffic lights. To add a traffic light, you have to select the Select tool. Then select the track you want to add a traffic light to by clicking on it. Click on Insert Signal and in the window that appears you have to check Traffic Light. In this first traffic light, we will create the Traffic Light Group in order to synchronize all the traffic lights. Click on the dropdown menu and select New.... Name your group as you wish and select it for the current Traffic Light. When your traffic light is configured, just click OK. Your Traffic light is now added to your Terrain, you just have to place it in the right spot on the sidewalk by dragging and dropping it. Repeat this step for as many traffic lights as you want in your Terrain. In mine, I choose to have four of them. In the video below, you can see how I created them.
  1. Now, letโ€™s synchronize our Traffic Lights. To do this, open the configuration of one of your traffic lights by double clicking on it, and in the Animation category click on Edit.... A new GUI appears where you can configure the color of your lights and the amount of time between every step. In order to change the starting state of a Traffic Light, just click on the On, Off or Blink button in front of the color you want to change. In my case, I want the Traffic Lights named Traffic Light and Traffic Light 2 to start at the Red state, so Iโ€™ve switched the first and last state of these two traffic lights, as you can see in the video below.

Step 3. Export the 3D

  1. In order to see the environment in the simulation, we need to generate the 3D file representing it. But before doing this, letโ€™s make sure our Traffic Lights are oriented correctly. You can switch to the Perspective View by clicking on the Camera button on the top right corner and by selecting Perspective View.

Perspective View

You can now see how the traffic lights are oriented and correct them if needed. In my case, the only one that was not oriented correctly was the one named Traffic Light 2. To correct the orientation just select the Traffic Light and in the SELECTION window search for Heading, then change its angle.

  1. Once the 3D representation is correct, we need to generate the 3D file. To do this, first save the terrain you just created by clicking on File\Save and name it as you wish. Then click on File\Export 3D Visual to start the 3D generation. Choose the location and the name of the file. An interface will appear allowing you to choose the objects you want to export. Simply check the objects you want in the 3D and uncheck those not needed.

Export Parameters

Note: In this menu, be sure NOT to check the box for 3D Objects. In the simulation, 3D Objects are handled by a different module, and exporting them in the Terrain will cause them to duplicate and overlap.

Congratulations you have created your own Terrain! Well done! ๐Ÿ‘

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