Efficient modelling and rendering of volumetric terrains on the GPU

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Dr. Umenhoffer Tamás
Department of Control Engineering and Information Technology

The aim of my thesis is to recreate and visualize natural stone formations, like cliffs, overhangs, natural archways, and various figures of limestone caves. Therefore I needed to create a terrain model that is, unlike the traditional height-fields, capable of express complex volumetric geometry, in addition the resource requirements are less than the voxel based solutions, and it can be integrated into the Ogre3D graphical rendering engine. The usability of the model is influenced by the quality of the content, which can be represented, so the implementation has to show means to create procedural content.

In my work, I show the features and constraints of the height field based solutions. I analyze alternative ways for the terrain modeling, and develop a modeling solution, which is capable to define formation with complex volumetric geometry. I explain the challenges of the implementation and the solutions for them, especially the Ogre3D engine integration. In conclusion, I compare my solution with the other described models in consideration of interactivity and resource demand.


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