X3D Support


The X3D (Xtensible 3D) ISO standard is an open standards file format and runtime architecture for representing and communicating 3D scenes and objects. X3D has a rich set of componentized features that you can customize. You can use X3D in applications such as engineering and scientific visualization, CAD and architecture, medical visualization, training and simulation, multimedia, entertainment, and education.

For information about supported X3D specification, see ISO/IEC 19775-1:2013. For information about supported X3D encoding, see ISO/IEC 19776-1.3:201x and ISO/IEC 19776-2.3:201x.

Relationship of X3D and VRML

X3D is the successor of the VRML 97 standard (see Virtual Reality Modeling Language (VRML)). X3D and VRML share many similar approaches, such as their coordinate systems and the description of objects using nodes and their fields. X3D provides several extensions, including additional nodes, fields, encoding, scene access interfaces, additional rendering control, and geospatial support. VRML97 is still a widely supported 3D format for tools and viewers, and is a direct subset of X3D. Many CAD tools and 3D editors support import from and export to the X3D format.

Because many 3D virtual world tools and CAD tools have adopted X3D, Simulink® 3D Animation™ software provides both X3D and VRML support. VRML97 is the default virtual world file format.

X3D Support in Simulink 3D Animation

You can use XML encoded (.x3d files) and Classic VRML encoded (.x3dv files) X3D file formats. X3D support is for versions from version 3.0 up to version 3.3. Support is for X3D files that contain components that comply to the Immersive profile.

You can use Simulink blocks and MATLAB® command-line interfaces to create and access virtual worlds.

X3D Support Limitations

In the 3D World Editor, you can edit only VRML and VRML-compliant X3D files (files that contain only X3D features that have VRML97 counterparts).

Simulink 3D Animation does not support X3D for Ligos® V-Realm Builder.

The X3D support has these limitations:

  • No support for binary-encoded files (.x3db).

  • The Simulink 3D Animation Web Viewer supports only X3D files that contain nodes complying to the HTML profile specified by the X3DOM developer community.

  • You can use the stl2vrml function to import CAD models in STL format (.stl files) to X3D format (.x3d or .x3dv files). However, other methods that Simulink 3D Animation provides for converting CAD models do not support conversion to X3D format.

  • You cannot inline X3D files (.x3d or .x3dv).

  • No support for the scene-access interface specified by ISO/IEC 19775-2:201x. To access virtual worlds, use Simulink blocks or the MATLAB commands.

  • LineProperties node support is limited to solid lines.

  • The engine ignores UNIT and additional COMPONENT statements and elements.

  • A PROTO node cannot have a VRML file (.wrl) that references an X3D file (.x3d or .x3dv).

Convert a VRML File to X3D Format

You can save VRML (.wrl) files as X3D format files. The conversion process determines whether the X3D file is an .x3d or x3dv file.

This example code converts a VRML file to X3D format:

w = vrworld('octavia_scene.wrl');

% save to XML encoding

% save to VRML syntax encoding

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