Disney Research


Unifying Points, Beams, and Paths in Volumetric Light Transport Simulation-Image

Efficiently computing light transport in participating media in a manner that is robust to variations in media density, scattering albedo, and anisotropy is a difficult and important problem in realistic image synthesis. While many specialized rendering techniques can efficiently resolve subsets of transport in specific media, no single approach can robustly handle all types of effects. To address this problem we unify volumetric density estimation, using point and beam estimators, and Monte Carlo solutions to the path integral formulation of the rendering and radiative transport equations. We extend multiple importance sampling to correctly handle combinations of these fundamentally different classes of estimators. This, in turn, allows us to develop a single rendering algorithm that correctly combines the benefits and mediates the limitations of these powerful volume rendering techniques.

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