Diploma and Master Theses (authored and supervised):

C. Winklhofer:
"Reflections, Refractions and Caustics in a Mixed-Reality Environment";
Supervisor: M. Wimmer, M. Knecht; Institut für Computergraphik und Algorithmen, 2013.

English abstract:
In a mixed-reality environment virtual objects are merged into a real scene. Such an augmentation with virtual objects offers great possibilities to present content in new and innovative ways. The visual appearance of these virtual objects depends on a plausible lighting simulation. Otherwise, virtual objects look artificial and out of place, which destroys the overall impression of the perceived scene.

Reflective and refractive objects are an inherent part of our physical environment. Accordingly, virtual objects of this type also enhance the overall impression and scope of a mixed-reality application. Many mixed-reality systems still neglect them: Such objects require a complex light simulation that is hard to embed in a mixed-reality system, which demands real-time frame rates to handle the user interaction.

This thesis describes the integration of reflective and refractive objects in a mixed-reality environment. The aim is to create a realistic light distribution that simulates reflections and refractions between real and virtual objects. Another important aspect for a believable perception are caustics, light focusing due to the scattering from reflective or refractive objects. Until recently, this effect was simply excluded in the lighting simulation of mixed-reality systems.

The proposed rendering method extends differential instant radiosity with three other image space rendering techniques capable to handle reflections, refractions and caustics in real time. By combining these techniques, our method successfully simulates the various lighting effects from reflective and refractive objects and is able to handle user interactions at interactive to realtime frame rates. This offers a practicable possibility to greatly improve the visual quality of a mixed-reality environment.

Caustics, Reflections, Mixed Reality, Refractions

Electronic version of the publication:

Created from the Publication Database of the Vienna University of Technology.