Just like the title says. I'd like to be able to export an elevation raster to any common mesh format (e.g., OBJ, STL, PLY).
I know this is super easy because I've already built open-source scripts that do it, using nothing but the dependencies that already ship with ArcGIS Pro's default conda instance. I just think it would be nice to have the functionality included in 3D Analyst.
Currently I manage a team that builds a high volume of precise, location-aware architectural models. We construct the models themselves using an industry standard 3D pipeline but seat the finished product on 3D terrain. We are not interested in CityEngine. Our workflow to get this terrain into external, professional 3D tools is:
Terrain to TIN... TIN to Multipatch... Multipatch to Collada... Collada to (SketchUp, Maya, Blender, Meshlab, etc). This is a bad workflow. Why, one could be forgiven for asking, do we have to go from a TIN to a Multipatch? That is because it's not *really* a TIN, it's an "Esri TIN" which is recognized by no mesh software at all, it is only for ArcGIS Desktop/Pro. So we have to incur the extra step of going to *another* dead-end format (Multipatch) to get it into a broadly compatible format (Collada).
So really my idea is an either/or: Either,
1. Raster to TIN will generate a compatible, standard TIN file; or,
2. A toolkit like Raster to Mesh gets introduced that allows the user to go straight from a surface raster to a *fully compatible, open* mesh format.
Again, I have scripted this up already; it's kind of funny but we're using ArcGIS Pro as a framework to call processes that allow us to avoid using Esri's dead-end proprietary formats. It does work but puts us in technical debt. Please add this functionality to ArcGIS Pro, even if it's stashed behind an extension paywall. Thanks!
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