Extending Backward Polygon Beam Tracing to Glossy Scattering Surfaces



Backward polygon beam tracing methods, that is beam tracing from the light source (L), are well suited to gather path coherency from specular (S) scattering surfaces. These methods are useful for modelling and efficiently simulating caustics on diffuse (D) surfaces; an effect due to LS+D transport paths. This paper generalizes backward polygon beam tracing to include a glossy (G) scattering surface. To this end the details of a beam tracing lumped model and implementation of L(S | G)D transport paths are presented. Although we limit the discussion to short transport paths, we show that backward beam tracing is faster than photon mapping by an order of magnitude for rendering caustics from glossy and specular surfaces.