Computer Graphics

University of California - Berkeley

Real-Time Rendering of Rough Refraction


We present an algorithm to render objects made of transparent materials with rough surfaces in real-time, under all-frequency distant illumination. Rough surfaces cause wide scattering as light enters and exits objects, which significantly complicates the rendering of such materials. We present two contributions to approximate the successive scattering events at interfaces, due to rough refraction: First, an approximation of the Bidirectional Transmittance Distribution Function (BTDF), using spherical Gaussians, suitable for real-time estimation of environment lighting using pre-convolution; second, a combination of cone tracing and macro-geometry filtering to efficiently integrate the scattered rays at the exiting interface of the object. We demonstrate the quality of our approximation by comparison against stochastic ray-tracing. Furthermore we propose two extensions to our method for supporting spatially varying roughness on object surfaces and local lighting for thin objects.


Charles de Rousiers, Adrien Bousseau, Kartic Subr, Nicolas Holzschuch, and Ravi Ramamoorthi. "Real-Time Rendering of Rough Refraction". IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics, February 2012.