Thanks for that wake-up!   I guess loading "Surface_1000" had me thinking I 
already had a "Surface",  but Exodus "surface" and Paraview "surface" are not 
the same.

With right thinking this was easy this morning.

Thanks again!


From: Moreland, Kenneth []
Sent: Monday, April 09, 2018 7:11 PM
To: Dennis Conklin <>; Paraview 
( <>
Subject: [EXT] RE: [Paraview] Normal vector to Exodus Sideset elements

 WARNING - External email; exercise caution.


Yes, this cat has a zipper that allows it's skin to come right off. (Maybe I 
took that "skin the cat" metaphor a bit too far.)

Anyway, just run the Extract Surface filter. After that you can run the 
Generate Surface Normals filter.


From: ParaView [] On Behalf Of Dennis 
Sent: Monday, April 9, 2018 1:22 PM
To: Paraview (<>) 
Subject: [EXTERNAL] [Paraview] Normal vector to Exodus Sideset elements


I'm sure I'm missing something here, so please knock me up alongside the head 
and point it out.

I load a sideset (surface) from an Exodus file.   I end up with a bunch of 
quads that Paraview conveniently created for me from the surface.   I need to 
calculate a Normal vector for each of these quads.  I have tried:

Generate surface normal - this is greyed out (wants poly data?)

Delaunay 3D on this to generate poly data, which I could then hopefully run 
Generate surface normal on, but it was still greyed

Tried Normal Glyphs which gave me point Normal vectors but gave me a bunch of 
Triangle and Polygon elements - I'm not sure what's going on here.
    PointDataToCellData to get GlyphVector for each Cell
    Python Calculator and ask for area(inputs[0]) the Polygon elements all get 
an Area of -1
    Calculator to get Area_X as product of GlyphVector_X and Area
    Threshold on Area_X > 0 -  don't want negative areas or some boundary cells 
with GlyphVector_X as negative
    Python Calculator to get sum(Area_X)
    This number appears to be about half of my expected number

These must be an easier way.  I'm not a vtk guru.   When I first load my 
surface, is there some vtk routine I could call within a Programmable filter to 
get the cell normal?????

Alternatively, anyone got an easier way to skin this cat?

Thanks for any hints  you may have.


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