External references (XREFs) are drawing files that behave as single entities when linked to a drawing. The most important attribute of XREFs is the fact that they do not have to be inserted into a drawing in order to be attached to it, which means that they provide drafters with valuable information without taking a toll on the original drawing's file size. This is one of the main reasons why XREFs are widely used by engineers working on large-scale projects, as they basically enable entire teams of professionals to work on individual components of a given project simultaneously while staying updated with any changes that may occur during the design process.
Here at Plexscape, we do realize the importance of providing our customers with the ability to make use of this particular feature of CAD software when dealing with high-quality, up-to-date imagery imported with our software. Therefore, we have created the PXV_IMAGERY_XREFUPDATE command, which enables users to restore imagery imported with Plex-Earth into external references attached to their drawing, and this tutorial is intended to demonstrate the step-by-step process that needs to be followed in order to fully leverage this key feature.
Step 1: Create a Georeferenced Drawing & Import Imagery
First, we need to set up our drawing's georeference using one of the two available options provided by Plex-Earth. In case we are dealing with an already georeferenced drawing, no further action needs to be taken, as Plex-Earth automatically recognizes the coordinate system applied. We then proceed with the creation of an Imagery Mosaic, which is the best option when it comes to having a high-quality background with satisfactory clarity to be used as an underlay for the design process.
It is worth noting that Plex-Earth offers the ability to get rid of unnecessary tiles when creating Imagery Mosaics.
Step 2: Create a new Drawing & Attach your previous one as an XREF
In this step, we are going to create a new drawing and attach our existing drawing to it using the XREF command. It's worth mentioning that we will have to use the same georeferencing settings applied to our previous drawing for the software to know where to place the restored imagery.
1) Once we are all set, we type XREF on the command line:
We then hit the Enter button on our keyboard and are presented with the external references palette.
2) We click on the DWG icon situated on the top left of the external references palette, and then select Attach DWG...:
In the next step, we will have to specify the DWG file we would like to attach to our existing drawing as an external reference.
3) Once we have picked our preferred XREF, we click Open:
Step 3: Restore Imagery Imported with Plex-Earth
Once our desired XREF has been attached to our drawing, we are good to go.
1) We start Plex-Earth and type PXV_IMAGERY_XREFUPDATE on the command line. We then hit the Enter button on our keyboard:
2) Now it's time to visit the Imagery Panel of Plex-Earth and open the Imagery Manager palette by clicking on the Show Imagery Manager icon:
Our images are now available in the form of an external reference file, and thus, we can begin designing using high-quality imagery imported with Plex-Earth as an XREF. In order to restore imagery imported with Plex-Earth into our external reference, we click on the refresh icon found on the Imagery Manager palette:
Once done, we can zoom to our restored imagery's extents by hitting the Zoom to object button:
And there we go! We have now restored our imagery successfully and can use it to extract valuable information about our project area.
Step 4: Manage workload
Thanks to the PXV_IMAGERY_XREFUPDATE command of Plex-Earth, it only took a couple of hours to finish digitizing all our catchment areas, manholes, and conduits, as it was feasible to get three of our team members to work on the same project concomitantly.
At first sight, it may seem easy, but if you take a closer look, you will realize that we actually had a lot of work to do. This goes to show that XREFs come in handy when you need multiple people working on the same project.
We hope that you have found this tutorial on how to restore imagery imported with Plex-Earth, helpful. Feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions you may still have.
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