“Antialiased ray tracing by adaptive progressive refinement” by Painter and Sloan

  • ©James S. Painter and Kenneth Sloan




    Antialiased ray tracing by adaptive progressive refinement



    We describe an antialiasing system for ray tracing based on adaptive progressive refinement. The goals of the system are to produce high quality antialiased images at a modest average sample rate, and to refine the image progressively so that the image is available in a usable form early and is refined gradually toward the final result.The method proceeds by adaptive stochastic sampling of the image plane, evaluation of the samples by ray tracing, and image reconstruction from the samples. Adaptive control of the sample generation process is driven by three basic goals: coverage of the image, location of features, and confidence in the values at a distinguished “pixel level” of resolution.A three-stage process of interpolation, filtering, and resampling is used to reconstruct a regular grid of display pixels. This reconstruction can be either batch or incremental.


    1. Bentley, Jon L. and Friedman, J.J. Data Structures for range searching. ACM Comp. Surv. 11, 4 (1979), 397-409.
    2. Bergman, Larry, Fuchs, Henry, Grant, Eric and Spach, Susan Image Rendering by Adaptive Refinement. Computer Graphics 20, 4 (Aug., 1986), 29-37, Proceedings of SIGGRAPH ’86 (Dallas, Texas, August 18-22, 1986).
    3. Blanford, Ronald P., Painter, James S. and Sloan, Kenneth R. Adaptive Sampling, Transmission, and Rendering of Images. SPIE Proceedings 1077 (Jan., 1989), SPIE Conference on Human Vision, Visual Processing, and Digital Display.
    4. Blinn, James F. Return of the Jaggy. IEEE Computer Graphics and Applications 9, 2 (Mar., 1989), 82-89.
    5. Burr, Irving W. Applied Statistical Methods. Academic Press, New York, NY, 1974.
    6. Cendes, Zoltan J. and Wong, Steven H. C~ Quadratic Interpolation Over Arbitrary Point Sets. IEEE Computer Graphics and Applications 7, 11 (Nov., 1987), 8-16.
    7. Cohen, Michael F., Chert, Shenchang E., Wallace, John R. and Greenberg, Donald P. A Progressive Refinement Approach to Fast Radiosity Image Generation. Computer Graphics 22, 4 (Aug., 1988), 75-82, Proceedings of SIGGRAPH ’88 (Atlanta, Georgia, August 1-5, 1988).
    8. Cook, Robert L. Stochastic Sampling in Computer Graphics. ACM Transactions on Graphics 5, 1 (Jan., 1986), 51-72.
    9. Cook, Robert L., Porter, Thomas and Carpenter, Loren Distributed Ray Tracing. Computer Graphics 18, 3(July, 1984), 137-146, Proceedings of SIGGRAPH ’84 (Minneapolis, Minnesota, July 23-27, 1984).
    10. Crow, Franklin C. Summed-Area Tables for Texture Mapping. Computer Graphics 18, 3 (July, 1984), 207-212, Proceedings of SIGGRAPH ’84, (Minneapolis, Minnesota, July 23-27, 1984).
    11. Dipp6, Mark A.Z. and Wold, E.H. Antialiasing through Stochastic Sampling. Computer Graphics I9, 3 (July, 1985), 69-78, Proceedings of SIGGRAPH ’85, (San Francisco, California, July 22-26, 1985).
    12. Kajiya, James T. The Rendering Equation. Computer Graphics20, 4(Aug., 1986), 143-150, Proceedings of SIGGRAPH ’86, (Dallas, Texas, August 18-22, 1986).
    13. Lee, Mark E., Redner, Richard A. and Uselton, Samuel P. Statistically Optimized Sampling for Distributed Ray Tracing. Computer Graphics 19, 3 (July, 1985), 61-67, Proceedings of SIGGRAPH ’85 (in San Francisco, CA, July 22-26, 1985).
    14. Lounsbery, J. Michael The Renaissance Modeling System. Dept. of Computer Science, Univ. of Washington, Tech. Rep. #89-01-05, Jan., 1989.
    15. Mitchell, Don P. Generating Antialiased Images at Low Sampling Densities. Computer Graphics 21, 4 (July, 1987), 65–69, Proceedings of SIGGRAPH ’87 (Anaheim, CA, July 27-31, 1987).
    16. Naiman, Avi and Foumier, Alain Rectangular Convolution for Fast Filtering of Characters. Computer Graphics21, 4 (July, 1987), 233-242, Proceedings of SIGGRAPH ’87, (Anaheim, CA, July 27-31, 1987).
    17. Preparata, Franco P. and Shamos, Michael I. Computational Geometry: An Introduction. Springer-Verlag, New York- Heidelberg-Berlin, 1985.
    18. Whitted, Turner J. An Improved Illumination Model for Shaded Display. Communications of the ACM 23, 6(June, 1980), 343-349.
    19. Yellott, James I. Jr. Spectral Consequences of Photoreceptor Sampling in the Rhesus Retina. Science 221 (July, 1983), 392- 385.

ACM Digital Library Publication:

Overview Page: