Global Illumination and Image-Based Rendering

SS 2017
Course Dates:
Lecture Tue, 10:15-11:45, starting April 25 AH V
Lecture Thu, 10:15-11:45, starting April 27 AH V
Exercise Wed, 10:15-11:45, starting May 3 118 (Seminar Room i8)
Exam (1st) Fri, August 11, 10:30 AH VI
Exam (2nd) Fri, September 22, 13:30 Aula 2

In this lecture we consider techniques for the generation and synthesis of photo-realistic images. The most important part of this process is the simulation of light distribution. The following are the main topics covered by this lecture:

Global Illumination:

  • Rendering Equation
  • Radiosity Approach
  • Monte-Carlo-Methods
  • Photon Mapping
  • GI in Movies and Games

Image-Based Rendering:

  • Spherical Harmonics and Precomputed Radiance Transfer
  • Environment Maps
  • Lightfields and their Generation
  • The Lumigraph

The lecture will be supplemented by an exercise course where several rendering techniques will be implemented and theoretical concepts are recapped.

Course Material:

Exercises and learning material will be in the L2P room. Register via campus or send an email with name, matr. number, rwth-email and campus user name to the above contact.


  • Preliminary Lecture Notes, pp. 107-end
  • Matt Pharr, Greg Humphreys: Physically Based Rendering from Theory to Implementation (2nd edition)
  • Philip Dutre, Kavita Bala, Philippe Bekaert: Advanced Global Illumination
  • Henrik W. Jensen: Realistic Image Synthesis Using Photon Mapping
  • P. Debevec et al.: Image-Based Modeling, Rendering, and Lighting, SIGGRAPH 99 Course Notes



  • The first lecture will take place on Tuesday, the 25th of April, the first exercise on the 3rd of May. All future announcements will only be published via the L2P room.

  • Regarding OpenFlipper: Do not mix Qt versions: First, you should have only one version of Qt installed. Furthermore, you must not mix debug and release builds. If your Qt was built in release mode (default e.g. on MacPorts), you must build OpenFlipper in release mode as well. You can tweak this using cmake or ccmake. OpenFlipper for Windows can be used with Visual Studio >= 2008.

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