Interactive Distributed Ray Tracing of Highly Complex Models
Many disciplines must handle the creation, visualization, and manipulation of huge and complex 3D environments. Examples include large structural and mechanical engineering projects dealing with entire cars, ships, buildings, and processing plants. The complexity of such models is usually far beyond the interactive rendering capabilities of todays 3D graphics hardware. Previous approaches relied on costly preprocessing for reducing the number of polygons that need to be rendered per frame but suffered from excessive precomputation times — often several days or even weeks.
In this paper we show that using a highly optimized software ray tracer we are able to achieve interactive rendering performance for models up to 50 million triangles including reflection and shadow computations. The necessary preprocessing has been greatly simplified and accelerated by more than two orders of magnitude. Interactivity is achieved with a novel approach to distributed rendering based on coherent ray tracing. A single copy of the scene database is used together with caching of BSP voxels in the ray tracing clients.
KeywordsAddress Space Global Illumination Cache Management Interactive Rendering Interactive Frame Rate
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