Optimally Fast Soft Shadows on Curved Terrain with Dynamic Programming and Maximum Mipmaps [article]

Dawoon Jung
2020 arXiv   pre-print
We present a simple, novel method of efficiently rendering ray cast soft shadows on curved terrain by using dynamic programming and maximum mipmaps to rapidly find a global minimum shadow cost in constant runtime complexity. Additionally, we apply a new method of reducing view ray computation times that pre-displaces the terrain mesh to bootstrap ray starting positions. Combining these two methods, our ray casting engine runs in real-time with more than 200% speed up over uniform ray stepping
more » ... th comparable image quality and without hardware ray tracing acceleration. To add support for accurate planetary ephemerides and interactive features, we integrated the engine into celestia.Sci, a general space simulation software. We demonstrate the ability of our engine to accurately handle a large range of distance scales by using it to generate videos of lunar landing trajectories. The numerical error when compared with real lunar mission imagery is small, demonstrating the accuracy and efficiency of our approach.
arXiv:2005.06671v1 fatcat:svb5i6b32fhjffp67vduyelgoy