Path tracing: sphere and triangle texture mapping

I had been planning to refine this project and offer a more detailed writeup on adding sphere and triangle texture mapping to the path tracer project, but for the time being I thought I would offer the code for download. Below are a couple of screen captures from the most recent version of the project. The code is available below. Download this project: path_tracer_texture_mapping.tar.bz2 Read more [...]

kd tree construction using the surface area heuristic, stack-based traversal, and the hyperplane separation theorem

In this post we will employ the hyperplane separation theorem and the surface area heuristic for kd tree construction to improve the performance of our path tracer. Previous posts have relied simply on detecting intersections between an axis aligned bounding box and the minimum bounding box of a triangle primitive. By utilizing the hyperplane separation theorem, we can cull additional triangles from a list of potential intersection candidates. From here, we will set out to construct a kd tree Read more [...]

Path tracer: thin lens, texture mapping, Fresnel equations, and smooth shading

A few new features have been added to our path tracer. The depth of field extension has been reworked slightly using the thin lens equation allowing us to specify a focal length and aperture. Fresnel equations have been added to more accurately model the behavior of light at the interface between media of different refractive indices. Textures can be applied to the plane primitive, and normals can be interpolated across the triangle primitive allowing for smooth shading. Below are three renders Read more [...]

Path tracer with triangle primitives and binary space partitioning

UPDATE: The post below was a purely naive attempt at implementing a rudimentary bounding volume hierarchy. A much more efficient implementation using a kd tree is available in this post. We will continue with the project we left off with in this post. We will attempt to add triangles to our list of primitives. Once we are able to render triangles, this opens the door to rendering full scale models. However, because models will contain upwards of thousands of triangles, we need to be able to Read more [...]

Path tracer depth of field

This is a small extension to the previous post. We will add a depth of field simulation to our path tracer project. I ran across this algorithm at this site. Below is a render of our path tracer with the depth of field extension. Essentially, we will define the distance to the focal plane and a blur radius. For each primary ray we find its intersection with the focal plane, , and jitter the ray origin by an amount, . We then define the new ray direction as . Read more [...]

A basic path tracer with CUDA

The path tracer we will create in this project will run on CUDA-enabled GPUs. You will need to install the CUDA Toolkit available from NVIDIA. The device code for this project uses classes and must be compiled with compute capability 2.0. If you are unsure what compute capability your card has, check out this list. Below are two screen captures of this project in action. This path tracer is basic and fairly crude and inefficient. I'll provide a brief overview of the code before Read more [...]