osgEarth has supported loading 3D Tiles datasets since 2020, based on a completely custom implementation of both a glTF plugin and a 3D Tiles layer plugin. The ability to visualize 3D Tiles in osgEarth has opened the door to a whole new class of data types, and being able to render high-resolution photogrammetry models and other assets from Cesium ion has been a game changer.
The 3D Tiles ecosystem has grown at a rapid pace and is quite challenging to keep up with for our custom implementation. We began to find datasets that didn't load properly in osgEarth, and we didn’t have the bandwidth to support extensions that were useful but required lots of work.
After seeing the success of Cesium for Unreal, we applied for a Cesium Ecosystem Grant to add support for Cesium Native to osgEarth rather than rely on our homegrown solution—ensuring that we have the same best-in-class 3D Tiles support as Cesium for Unreal in osgEarth. We are proud to have been awarded the grant to complete this work.
Inspired by projects like Cesium for Unreal, Cesium for Omniverse, and vsgCS, we designed a new osgEarth NodeKit called osgEarthCesium that exposes Cesium Native to osgEarth.
Bringing the entire Cesium World Terrain draped with Bing imagery from Cesium ion is as simple as adding this to your earth file:
<CesiumNative3DTiles name="Cesium World Terrain"> <asset_id>1</asset_id> <raster_overlay>2</raster_overlay> </CesiumNative3DTiles>
osgEarth can use Cesium Native to load datasets from Cesium ion or any stand-alone 3D Tiles dataset, including Google Maps Platform’s Photorealistic 3D Tiles.
You can view instructions on how to build osgEarth with support for Cesium Native here. We're excited to see what you build with osgEarth and Cesium Native!