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STL File Reader

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STL File Reader

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11 Dec 2008 (Updated )

STLREAD imports geometry from a binary stereolithography (STL) file into MATLAB.

3D Model Demo

3D Model Demo

This is short demo that loads and renders a 3D model of a human femur. It showcases some of MATLAB's advanced graphics features, including lighting and specular reflectance.

Contents

Load STL mesh

Stereolithography (STL) files are a common format for storing mesh data. STL meshes are simply a collection of triangular faces. This type of model is very suitable for use with MATLAB's PATCH graphics object.

% Import an STL mesh, returning a PATCH-compatible face-vertex structure
fv = stlread('femur.stl');

Render

The model is rendered with a PATCH graphics object. We also add some dynamic lighting, and adjust the material properties to change the specular highlighting.

patch(fv,'FaceColor',       [0.8 0.8 1.0], ...
         'EdgeColor',       'none',        ...
         'FaceLighting',    'gouraud',     ...
         'AmbientStrength', 0.15);

% Add a camera light, and tone down the specular highlighting
camlight('headlight');
material('dull');

% Fix the axes scaling, and set a nice view angle
axis('image');
view([-135 35]);

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