Acrobat 3D and Adobe Reader, Version 8 and later, include support for 3D Annotations®. So you can embed 3D CAD models within a PDF, and explore them interactively through manipulations available in the default toolbar.
 
The new associated class of JavaScripts for 3D adds a virtually unlimited set of possibilities. These include: specifying the render modes and 3D matrix transformations of any of the individual meshes; setting camera position, target, and field of view; detecting mouse and keyboard events; controlling animations, and many more behaviors. Time Event Handlers allow any attribute to be changed continuously over time. There are over 800 function calls in the JavaScript API for 3D Annotations alone. In addition to this, extra 3D models and images can be loaded into the 3D Annotation as Resources.
 
As JavaScript is a fully object-oriented language, it is possible for arbitrarily complex software modules to be built and maintained. The document-side JavaScript communicates with this 3D Annotation JavaScript using a handle - the 3D Context. Therefore, all user interaction in the PDF file can communicate through various links, buttons, and other actions available as part of the standard toolset.
 


Acrobat 8

 

Get a brief overview of the JavaScript for Acrobat 3D Annotations API, Version 8, followed by a description of the objects.
(Apr 2007)
 
Learn how to programmatically create 3D annotations in PDF files using the Acrobat SDK or the PDF Library SDK.
(Apr 2007)
 
Acrobat 7 Professional contains a new 3D Tool, which allows you to embed U3D objects in a PDF document. After this 3D model is embedded in a PDF, it can be distributed and viewed by anyone with Acrobat or Adobe Reader 7.x.
(Feb 2006)