Algorithms for rendering realistic terrain image sequences and their parellel implementation

Gennady Agranov, Craig Gotsman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


We present algorithms for rendering realistic images of large terrains and their implementation on a parallel computer for rapid production of terrain-animation sequences. "Large" means datasets too large for RAM. A hybrid ray-casting and projection technique incorporates quadtree subdivision techniques and filtering using precomputed bit masks. Hilbert space-filling curves determine the imagepixel rendering order. A parallel version of the algorithm is based on a Meiko parallel computer architecture, designed to relieve dataflow bottlenecks and exploit temporal image coherence. Our parallel system, incorporating 26 processors, can generate a full color-terrain image at video resolution (without noticable aliasing artifacts) every 2 s, including I/O and communication overheads.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)455-464
Number of pages10
JournalThe Visual Computer
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1995
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


  • Flight simulation
  • Parallel processing
  • Rendering
  • Terrain


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