Connect & Import Data

Common 3D workflows such as industrial planning and visualization require working with data from several tools and data sources. Built on OpenUSD, Omniverse enables you to ingest and unify data, so you can continue to work in the 3D applications and simulation tools that you rely on.

If your data is not already in USD, you have two options for converting and importing your data into Omniverse: the CAD-to-USD Converter extension or through Omniverse Connectors. The platform provides the direct import of most common 3D file formats via the CAD Converter. Alternatively, Omniverse Connectors offer a strong link directly to some 3D software. Custom connectors can be developed and sample connector code is provided in the Omniverse launcher.

CAD Data

Using the CAD-to-USD Converter, there are a few ways you can import or convert CAD files into Omniverse for editing or aggregating.

  • Import to Stage: this will convert your CAD data into a USD file directly in your stage. This is beneficial for editing and optimizing the data.

  • Import as Reference: this will convert the file outside of the session and then reference it into the stage. This is useful if you are aggregating the data, but not making changes inside of Omniverse.

Import Data via CAD-to-USD Converter

Import to Stage

To import a CAD file into Omniverse, choose Import in the File Menu. Select the Import to Stage option.

If the CAD data is relatively small and well encapsulated, it may be beneficial to disable instancing to have complete flexibility when working with the content.


The “Import to Stage” option does not exist for JT, DGN and STL. Use the “Importing for Aggregation” workflow outlined below and then open the converted USD file.


Depending on your intended workflow, it might be advisable to import small sections of source data individually. For example, if you intend to aggregate individual assets (such as robots, containers or conveyors) in Omniverse USD Explorer, it may be beneficial to convert each one separately. This helps with granular encapsulation of your dataset components.

Importing via Omniverse Connectors

If your data is coming from an application with an Omniverse Connector, you may want to use the Connector workflow to import your data instead.

To connect Omniverse USD Explorer to an external data source for uni- or bi-directional communication, use the Connector for the respective Host Application. While the application is connected, you can use that application as the primary tool to interact with the data. This approach is mostly suited for workflows such as space planning and collaborative design.


Custom connectors can be developed to your critical applications. Learn more about developing your own connector.

Convert Data

To convert data but not immediately import it, find it in the Content Browser. Then right click and select Convert to USD. This is particularly useful when dealing with larger numbers of CAD files. Once they are converted, they can be opened for editing (File > Open) or referenced for aggregation. This can be done via drag and drop from the Content Browser - or by adding references to prims (see below for details).

Converting via scripting

It can be very beneficial to convert large amounts of data via python scripting, especially if additional processing steps (like optimization) should be performed or the conversion should be repeated periodically.

USD Data

USD Files can simply be opened for editing via File > Open or referenced for aggregation. This can be done via drag and drop from the Content Browser - or by adding references to prims (see below for details).

Next Steps: Learn how to assemble a scene