Thursday, September 7, 2017

Energy3D exports Wavefront OBJ files

Fig. 1: An Energy3D model of a house
Starting from Version 7.2.6, users can export most parts of Energy3D models in Wavefront's OBJ format, which has been adopted by many 3D graphics applications and supported by many 3D printers. This provides a possibility to 3D-print Energy3D models and import them into other software.

Fig. 2: OBJ output
OBJ files can also be embedded within Web pages. This mechanism will be important in developing our Virtual Solar World platform, a Google Map application that collects and displays users' Energy3D models of buildings, solar farms, power plants, and so on. The Virtual Solar World is an important part of our Energy3D ecosystem. Figure 1 shows an Energy3D model and Figure 2 shows its OBJ form. As you can see, most of the features in the original Energy3D model are preserved after the conversion.

Fig. 3: An Energy3D model of a solar tower
Fig. 4: OBJ output
Power plants designed in Energy3D can be exported in the OBJ format as well. Figure 3 shows an Energy3D model of a solar power tower and Figure 4 shows its OBJ conversion.

Caveat: At this point, not all OBJ files exported from Energy3D are 3D-printable. Even when an OBJ model looks fine on the computer, it doesn't always get printed right. We are still investigating why the exported OBJ format is not compatible with some 3D printing services.

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