Volume-Preserving Deformation of Terrain in Real-Time
Abstract: Deformation of terrain is a natural component in real life. A car driving over a muddy area creates deep trails as the mud gives room to the tires. A person running across a snow-covered field causes the snow to deform to the shape of the feet. However, when these types of interactions between terrain and objects are modelled and rendered in real-time computer graphics applications, cheap approximations such as texture splatting is commonly used. This lack of realism not only looks poor to the viewer, it can also cause information to get lost and be a barrier to immersion. This thesis proposes an efficient system for permanent terrain deformations in real-time. In a volume-preserving manner, the ground material is displaced and animated as objects of arbitrary shapes intersect the terrain. Recent features of GPUs are taken advantage of to achieve high enough performance for the system to be used in real-time applications such as games and simulators.
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