Midland Valley - the structural geology experts


Digital Workflows from the Field to Classroom:

an Integrated Solution

Steven Clelland and Alan Gibbs.

Accepted for presentation at Enhancing Fieldwork Learning Showcase, 16th - 18th September 2011, Port Talbot, Wales.


Geological field training methods in UK universities are essentially unchanged for over a century, with almost all undergraduate students mapping on paper (or card) and pencil. Recent advances in hardware and software technology have made digital mapping a realistic alternative to the traditional approach.

Digital mapping provides significant advantages over using paper and pencil; principally the large time savings in the evenings, when instead of ‘inking-in’, time can be spent analysing the collected data and thinking about the geology. Benefits in terms of flexibility, accuracy and the ability to integrate into both course work and modern industry workflows provide students with added value.

A number of digital mapping systems are available commercially and through open source but these have either been primarily developed for non-geological applications, or are limited in the extent to which they integrate into section, 3d model building and geological modelling at the level now commonplace and expected in the commercial world.

Midland Valley has recently developed FieldMove for digital mapping specifically to address these two issues. FieldMove provides an intuitive interface for mapping built specifically for geologists. By integrating with the existing Move desktop application, data can be viewed in 3D, analysed including stereographic analysis, be used for cross-section and 3D model construction as well as incorporated into forward and reverse modelling to resolve and enhance understanding of geological processes.

FieldMove will be demonstrated and its potential for training outlined through to the integrated workflows to further analysis. FieldMove and Move are free for training and research use and are already used by a community of over 200 universities worldwide.

Keywords : digital field mapping, fieldmove