Simulating clouds with procedural texturing techniques using the GPU
Tarantilis, Georgios E.
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Many 3D training simulations employ static, and to some extent, simplistic natural phenomena representation that often leaves much to be desired. Taking advantage of the latest advancements in computer graphics hardware allows modeling dynamic natural phenomena such as clouds. Specifically, utilizing procedural techniques and high-level shading languages, it is possible to produce considerably more realistic simulations. This thesis designed and implemented a visual simulation component, which renders convincing clouds using procedural noise-based texture mapping techniques. Both traditional rendering and shader-enabled rendering supported by the OpenGL Shading Language are utilized. This component has been included in the Delta3d simulation engine and is used to create convincing clouds in outdoor simulations while the performance penalty imposed is considered acceptable. Custom tools have been developed for easy noise texture parameterization and cross-platform compatibility has been demonstrated.
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