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The irradiance volume

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4 Author(s)
Greger, G. ; STEP Tools Inc., Troy, NY, USA ; Shirley, P. ; Hubbard, P.M. ; Greenberg, D.P.

A major goal in computer graphics is realistic image synthesis. To this end, illumination methods have evolved from simple local shading models to physically based global illumination algorithms. Local illumination methods consider only the light energy transfer between an emitter and a surface (direct lighting), while global methods account for light energy interactions between all surfaces in an environment, considering both direct and indirect lighting. Even though the realistic effects that global illumination algorithms provide are frequently desirable, the computational expense of these methods is too great for many applications. Dynamic environments and scenes containing a very large number of surfaces often pose problems for global illumination methods. This article presents a different approach to calculating the global illumination of objects. Instead of striving for accuracy at the expense of performance, we rephrase the goal: to achieve a reasonable approximation with high performance. This places global illumination effects within reach of many applications in which visual appearance is more important than absolute numerical accuracy

Published in:

Computer Graphics and Applications, IEEE  (Volume:18 ,  Issue: 2 )

Date of Publication:

Mar/Apr 1998

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