Reynolds, S. J and Johnson, J. K. 2002. GeoBlocks 3D - Interactive 3D Geologic Blocks. In: Bobyarchick, A. 2002. Visualisation, Teaching and Learning in Structural Geology. Journal of the Virtual Explorer, 9, 39-40.
GeoBlocks 3D - Interactive 3D Geologic Blocks
Placed in Dynamic Review - 3 December 2002

Stephen J. Reynolds and Julia K. Johnson*

Department of Geological Sciences, Arizona State University
Tempe, Arizona 85287-1404

*Current address: Applied Science Department/Geology,
Glendale Community College, Glendale, Arizona 85302


One of the important goals of undergraduate geology courses is to help students learn how to visualize geologic structures in three dimensions. Students are asked to visualize structural geometries from geologic maps, cross sections, block diagrams, and actual landscapes. Toward this goal, we developed GeoBlocks 3D, which contains interactive QuickTime Virtual Reality movies illustrating the three-dimensional nature of geologic structures within blocks. Students can rotate the blocks, make them partially transparent to view their internal structure, cut through or erode them, displace faults, and more. The movies are designed so that students must be actively engaged, interacting with the blocks by clicking and dragging, either up or down or left and right. The GeoBlocks 3D materials have been used in introductory geology courses and undergraduate structural geology, both with great success.

Keywords: Structural geology, introductory geology, three-dimensional visualization, block diagrams, geologic blocks, QuickTime.



Use of Materials

Movie List