GPlates 1.4 released

What's new in version 1.4:-

  • Export numerical and colour reconstructed rasters:
    • Exports each visible raster layer to a separate raster file.
      • User specified latitude/longitude export region and pixel resolution.
    • Numerical export writes floating-point data:
      • Supported raster formats: NetCDF, GMT NetCDF, GeoTIFF and Erdas Imagine,
      • Standard use of not-a-number (NaN) for pixels not covered by reconstructed raster.
    • Colour export:
      • New supported colour raster formats: GeoTIFF and Erdas Imagine,
      • Uses per-layer colour palette as needed,
      • Includes surface relief lighting.
  • Import raster improvements:
    • New import raster formats: ERMapper, Erdas Imagine and GeoTIFF.
    • Imports georeferencing from source raster file.
    • Supports inbuilt raster spatial reference system:
      • Includes projections (for example, Lambert Conformal Conic).
    • Improved performance when importing very large rasters and displaying in 2D map views.
  • New Move Pole canvas tool:
    • Supports Modify Reconstruction Pole canvas tool:
      • by allowing user to specify location of pole used for rotation adjustments.
    • Drag pole location with mouse or enter text coordinates.
    • Optionally constrain pole location to moving/fixed stage pole of clicked feature.
      • Includes tracking stage pole over time.
  • Velocity smoothing near plate boundaries.
  • Mid-ocean ridges:
    • Supports spreading asymmetry,
    • More accurate half-stage rotation.
      • Needed in some rare cases.
  • Volume visualisation of 3D scalar fields (continued early preview functionality):
    • To be officially released in GPlates 1.5.
    • This release (1.4) adds preview functionality (since 1.3) available to advanced users:
      • Requires the "--enable-scalar-field-import" command-line switch to enable scalar field import.
      • For example, "cd C:\Program Files (x86)\GPlates\GPlates 1.4.0" and "gplates-1.4.0.exe --enable-scalar-field-import".
      • Enables menu item 'File -> Import -> Import 3D Scalar Field...'
    • Preliminary support for 'regional' (non-global) scalar fields.
    • Colour palette improvements:
      • Optionally remap scalar/gradient palette range,
      • Adjust range using mean and standard deviation of scalar field.
    • Supports transparent colours for isosurface and cross sections.

...for the complete list of changes please see the CHANGELOG file in the GPlates source-code releases.

Future functionality:
We have spent a substantial amount of time developing a python Application Programming Interface (API) for GPlates.
It is not yet ready for public release, but it will enable researchers to access GPlates reconstruction functionality in their python scripts.
We are also working on project files, volume visualisation improvements and a Hellinger tool.

Posted by John Cannon 2014-04-18

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