3D CAD, 3DEXPERIENCE

Introducing xHighlight on the 3DEXPERIENCE Platform

By Sarah Taylor on March 29, 2021

On the 3DEXPERIENCE platform, technical product communication has become easier than ever with the new xHighlight App. Available with the Product Communicator Role, xHighlight allows you to import your CAD data into the 3D Presentation workspace where you can generate precise technical communication documents for any product. The user-friendly interface is very intuitive, offering simple model manipulation tools like zoom, rotate, and explode components. Create your model Scenarios, and then present right within the Play mode of the app, or export into high quality images for use offline.

All it takes to get started with xHighlight is three simple steps:

  1. Import the model
  2. Set the scenes
  3. Show it off!

3DEXPERIENCE xHighlight User InterfaceImage 1. The xHighlight User Interface

Import the CAD Model

After starting your new blank presentation, one of the first steps is to import your 3D CAD model. xHighlight takes advantage of the 3DEXPERIENCE platform’s file storage and management tools, so you can save your presentation right in the same Collaborative Space where your CAD data is stored. Also, because the presentation is linked to the CAD file, any changes made to the original model will propagate into the presentation. This live link means that one user can make changes to the CAD model, while another can work in parallel on the presentation without worrying about their model views being out of date.

Set the Scenes

Each page of the presentation is called a Scenario and they are listed in the Scene Manager, as shown in Image 1 above. For each Scenario, the model can be shown using different camera angles and components can be hidden, shown or exploded into a new position to highlight different information. In Images 2, 3, and 4 below, Scenes have been created using various annotation tools such as explode lines, a plane-to-plane 3D dimension and labels linked to the filenames of the hardware components. Additional annotations can be added to further enrich the scenes, such as 2D images, 3D linear and circular arrows linked to the geometry of the model, and a magnifying tool called the Digger, which users of SOLIDWORKS Composer will find familiar.

3DEXPERIENCE xHighlight Explode Lines

Image 2. Components have been exploded to show assembly steps with Explode Lines.

3DEXPERIENCE xHighlight Dimension Annotation

Image 3. Components have been exploded and hidden, and a 3D Dimension annotation has been added.

3DEXPERIENCE xHighlight Hardware Components

Image 4. Components have been exploded. Some components have labels linked to their individual filenames.

Show it off!

When the project is complete, there are a few options for presenting it. One option is to use the presenter mode right inside the app. Simply select the Play mode when opening xHighlight. In the Play mode, you will be able to view animated transitions between Scenes and make use of interactive links to navigate between them, without any of the editing tools in the way.

Alternatively, there are export options to save and present outside of the app. Presentation Scenarios can be saved out as individual image files or can be animated together into a video. One export option that is unique to xHighlight is “save as Technical Illustration,” which produces Scalable Vector Graphics with artistic shading and outlining like the images below!


3DEXPERIENCE xHighlight Technical IllustrationImage 5. Technical Illustration of Image 2.

3DEXPERIENCE xHighlight Technical Illustration Hardware ComponentsImage 6. Technical Illustration of Image 4.

There are many tools and applications within the 3DEXPERIENCE platform specifically designed to meet the needs of users and companies who have started to rely on 3D printing as a method of manufacturing. The ability to 3D print the models being created in the 3DEXPERIENCE platform is a great way of taking the ideas in your workflow from design to parts, all the while benefiting from its collaborative tools.

The 3DEXPERIENCE platform opens your company up to a myriad of new solutions and features to help make your life easier and assist you in designing faster. Watch our free webinar "Top 5 Ways to Speed Up the Design Process Using 3DEXPERIENCE" to see more.

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