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Here is the obj that I'm trying to render (they represent charged particles) https://www.dropbox.com/s/e3w87d38pqizjzr/event000000000-tracks.obj?dl=0

Edit: just to be clear, these aren't arbitrary curved lines - they represent the output of a physics simulation so I need to render EXACTLY these lines.

Using the internal renderer I can chose the 'wire' material and this looks great. However the detector itself looks very messy with 'internal' and so I would prefer to use cycles, and here I'm completely stuck. This is NOT the wireframe view of a solid object - it's really just a bunch of lines and I just cannot work out how to get them to appear. Any hints?

For reference, I want to produce something similar to :

enter image description here

https://cds.cern.ch/record/1406073/files/eeee-run167675-evt876658967-3d.jpg?subformat=icon-640

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For an object to be visible in cycle it needs faces. Vertices and Edges will not render. There are many ways to do what you want.

One option is to use curve objects.

If you assign some bevel depth to a curve it will become like a thin string. Using an emission shader will make it glow on its own.

enter image description here

enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for the emission tip - I had tried something similar, but it wasn't very useful since I couldn't see anything. I don't think curves help me since I need to render exactly the lines I have in my obj file (this is the output of a physics simulation). Can I add a bevel to a complicated object like that? $\endgroup$ – Edward Moyse May 7 '18 at 14:15
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I would suggest using the BTrace addon.

  1. Make an object and add a particle system to it.

  2. Add a turbulence field to get wavy lines.

  3. Run the particle sim (be careful using over 250 particles, blender will freeze)

  4. Once your particles are where you want them, open BTrace and click Particle Trace.

It will create all those lines for you, they will be too thick or thin, so go to your curve settings and hold ALT with all the lines selected and you can change the thickness of all of them at once.

enter image description here

enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks very much for this - but the lines are built from a simulation, so I need to render exactly these. Not just arbitrary lines. $\endgroup$ – Edward Moyse May 7 '18 at 13:52

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