HexBox: Interactive Box Modeling of Hexahedral Meshes

Francesco Zoccheddu, Enrico Gobbetti, Marco Livesu, Nico Pietroni, Gianmarco Cherchi
Computer Graphics Forum, Volume 42, Number 5, page 1--15 - july 2023
Download the publication : sgp2023-hexbox.pdf [1.3Mo]  
We introduce HexBox, an intuitive modeling method and interactive tool for creating and editing hexahedral meshes. Hexbox brings the major and widely validated surface modeling paradigm of surface box modeling into the world of hex meshing. The main idea is to allow the user to box-model a volumetric mesh by primarily modifying its surface through a set of topological and geometric operations. We support, in particular, local and global subdivision, various instantiations of extrusion, removal, and cloning of elements, the creation of non-conformal or conformal grids, as well as shape modifications through vertex positioning, including manual editing, automatic smoothing, or, eventually, projection on an externally-provided target surface. At the core of the efficient implementation of the method is the coherent maintenance, at all steps, of two parallel data structures: a hexahedral mesh representing the topology and geometry of the currently modeled shape, and a directed acyclic graph that connects operation nodes to the affected mesh hexahedra. Operations are realized by exploiting recent advancements in grid-based meshing, such as mixing of 3-refinement, 2-refinement, and face-refinement, and using templated topological bridges to enforce on-the-fly mesh conformity across pairs of adjacent elements. A direct manipulation user interface lets users control all operations. The effectiveness of our tool, released as open source to the community, is demonstrated by modeling several complex shapes hard to realize with competing tools and techniques.

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BibTex references

  author       = {Zoccheddu, F. and Gobbetti, E. and Livesu, M. and Pietroni, N. and Cherchi, G.},
  title        = {HexBox: Interactive Box Modeling of Hexahedral Meshes},
  journal      = {Computer Graphics Forum},
  number       = {5},
  volume       = {42},
  pages        = {1--15},
  month        = {july},
  year         = {2023},
  keywords     = {visual computing},
  doi          = {10.1111/cgf.14899},
  url          = {},

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» Enrico Gobbetti
» Marco Livesu
» Nico Pietroni
» Gianmarco Cherchi