NVIDIA reveals Iray VR for photoreal imagery in real-time

NVIDIA has today announced its Iray VR, an adaptation of their Iray ray-tracing engine optimised for virtual reality.

Iray is NVIDIA’s physically-simulated rendering technology that can create photorealistic imagery by simulating the physical behaviour of light and materials. Typically, rendering frames in such high detail as required by this technology couldn’t translate to the demanding 90FPS of virtual-reality, but NVIDIA have created Iray VR as a new rendering plugin to optimise the technology for virtual reality.

On stage at GTC 2016, Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang explained that Iray VR works by creating light probes around the scene that render light-fields, which are volumetric areas that contain the information about the light travelling through that space. The probes for sample are then chosen based on the viewers location and calculates what their view should be. The technology behind Iray VR therefore allows photoreal imagery in real-time.

Huang demoed the new Iray VR technology on an HTC Vive on stage showing a view of the company’s yet-to-be-built new offices rendered with Iray VR.

NVIDIA also revealed Iray VR Lite which is a similar ray plugin for 3DS Max, which renders ray-traced photospheres optimised and viewable on mobile devices. Both Iray VR and Iray VR Lite will be available in June.

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