nTop 5.0 - New Implicit Modeling Kernel


Learn more about the changes happening in nTop 5.0 regarding our new implicit modeling kernel.

What is happening?

We are releasing our new implicit modeling kernel in nTop 5.0. This advanced implicit kernel incorporates our experience working with numerous customers over many years on mainstream production parts.

Our new implicit kernel also enables our latest product, nTop Core. nTop Core is a developer library for nTop’s partners to embed in their applications so they can work directly with implicit bodies while avoiding meshing bottlenecks. This will increase the number of vendors available to our customers for meshless printing and implicit interop. Please visit our nTop Core page to learn more.


Frequently Asked Questions:

1.0 What is an "implicit modeling kernel"?

nTop represents complex geometry as “implicits”. To create complex implicit geometries, the implicit kernel, or “modeling engine,” performs calculations to return geometry.


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2.0 Why did nTop build a new implicit modeling technology?

Our customers are innovators, pushing the boundaries of what’s possible with our technology every day. Our new kernel unlocks more speed, precision, and functionality. It also enables us to better integrate with existing customer tools.


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3.0 When does this change take place?

This change will occur with the release of nTop 5.0 on June 24th, 2024. All releases after nTop 5.0 will be built on the new implicit kernel.


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4.0 What are the benefits of this new technology?

  • Fast booleans at scale - With our new kernel, workflows that need to perform hundreds of boolean modeling operations, such as added perforations for tooling or texturing, will be able to run within seconds, not hours.
  • Rendering, meshing, and slicing speed - As part designs become more complex, the speed of design iterations increases. Our new kernel reduces the biggest bottlenecks in the design process, especially on parts containing hundreds of features, such as lattices.
  • Geometry precision - Improved implicit modeling precision to meet your production-grade engineering requirements such as:
    • Sharper mesh edges with fewer iterations
    • Higher accuracy modeling for thin walls such as TPMS lattices for Additively Manufactured parts and micron-scale tolerance for machined parts
  • Platform for future development - This new technology will enable us to respond to your feedback better and build the features you want, such as improved integrations with nTop Core. Additional features we are working on include better CAD body exports and meshing.


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5.0 Which applications or use cases will benefit from the new technology?

Any workflows and applications that involve complex geometry, such as lattices, perforations, and texturing, will benefit from the improved performance.

  • Applications that use complex lattice and fin designs, such as Heat Exchangers and Medical Implants
  • Applications with thousands of perforations created by boolean operations, such as vacuum form tooling and filters
  • Applications with complex surface texturing or patterning such as Medical Implants and Gas Turbine Liners


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6.0 Can I run a notebook created in nTop 4.X in nTop 5.0 or vice versa?

  • Yes, you can open and run all files created in earlier versions of nTop, but there may be minor differences when regenerating implicit geometry.
  • No, Notebooks saved in nTop 5.0 are not guaranteed to run in older versions of nTop. When a file is run in 5.0, deprecated blocks will be auto-updated to newer, supported versions. If your notebook contains any of those updated blocks, it may fail when trying to open in an older version that does not support the newer blocks. This is consistent across all of our software version updates.


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7.0 Before I update to nTop 5.0, is there anything I should do? What actions should I take to reduce the impact on my files?

  • We always recommend making a copy of your nTop notebook before opening in a newer version of nTop.
  • Ensure you follow best practices in our learning center when building workflows in nTop.

Visit our support article for more information on 5.0 differences and actions to mitigate the impact on files.


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8.0 Why will there be differences when running a notebook in 5.0?

The new implicit kernel includes improvements to data structures, algorithms for implicits, and upgrades in precision. All these contribute to slight differences in calculations that can compound. The result of a notebook run in 5.0, albeit different, will be higher quality than those produced by the previous version of nTop.


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9.0 What kind of differences will I see when I run my notebook in 5.0?

  • This will depend on your workflow and which blocks you’ve been using. Please see our support article for details on differences. 
  • We have completed in-depth quality testing to minimize any differences and are confident that, in most cases, you will see the same result as your original workflow.


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10.0 How can I get an old version of nTop if this update doesn’t suit my needs?

Please reach out to support@ntop.com, and our support team will be able to provide you with a download link for an older version of your choice.


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11.0 Are you going to continue supporting customers using older versions of nTop?

As always, nTop's dedicated support team is ready to answer your questions no matter what version you run. If you are on an older version, there may be limitations in the support provided based on available blocks.


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12.0 Will nTop continue to fix bugs or add enhancements to older versions of nTop?

Consistent with all previous releases, all major bug fixes and enhancements will be built on the latest version of nTop. If you have any concerns, please don't hesitate to contact your CSM or our support team.


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13.0 Where can I find more information about nTop 5.0?


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