Riccardo Maria Bianchi PhD, Particle Physicist

Add a new ATLAS sub-detector to VP1

Here below we will see how to add a new piece of detector to VP1, to get it rendered and displayed correctly.

As an example, let us say we want to add to VP1 the visualization of the new AFP (ATLAS Forward Proton) detector.

Step 1 - VP1Algs

We start by setting a command-line flag in VP1Algs/share/vp1.

We set a new variable towards the beginning of the file: FLAG_AFP=0 We catch the command-line arg:

elif [ "x${arg}" == "x-afp" ]; then

We add an entry in the VP1 usage message:

echo "-afp : Init geometry and converters for the AFP forward detector."

If the new command-line option is used, then I set a variable to be passed to the python script (see next step):

if [ "x$FLAG_AFP" != "x0" ]; then
if [ "x$OPTS" != "x" ]; then OPTS="$OPTS;"; fi

Now we edit the python launcher VP1Algs/share/vp1.py to load the new geometry from Athena.

Towards the beginning of the file, I initialize the new variable to zero by default:

if not 'vp1AFP' in dir(): vp1AFP=False

Then, I set the new variable to ON, if it has been passed by the vp1 bash script (from step 1):

if (vp1AFP): DetFlags.AFP_setOn()
else:        DetFlags.AFP_setOff()

Note: DetFlags is an Athena python module, which defines the flags for all the ATLAS sub-detectors; you can find it here.

Step 2 - VP1GeometrySystems

In the file VP1GeometrySystems/VP1GeometrySystems/VP1GeoFlags.h, define a new bit flag for the new sub-detector.

to be written

Note: in C++ an enum is handled as an int value; so you can safely define up to 32 flags with hex strings.

Add the new system to the GUI controller.

In the file VP1GeometrySystems/src/VP1GeometrySystem.cxx:

  1. add the new detector to the function VP1GeometrySystem::buildController():

     d->addSubSystem( VP1GeoFlags::AFP,"*AFP*");
  2. add a new case to the method VP1GeometrySystem::Imp::createPathExtras:

     case VP1GeoFlags::AFP:
  3. In the file ``, create a new entry for the new piece of detector:


    this will appear in the tree within the “Browser” window of the “Geo” tab:

  4. Using the “Qt Designer” program (once the ATLAS environment has been set, you can launch this typing designer at the command-line), open the file VP1GeometrySystems/src/geometrysystemcontroller.ui and add to the UI a checkbox for the new detector and call it, for example, checkBox_ALFA:

  5. In the VP1GeometrySystems/src/GeoSysController.cxx file, map the new checkbox to the corresponding GeoFlag adding this line:

     d->subSysCheckBoxMap[VP1GeoFlags::AFP] = d->ui.checkBox_AFP;

Now, start VP1 with the new flag: vp1 -afp; you will see the “AFP” checkbox enabled. If you check it, the AFP geometry will be displayed.