Daylighting Simulation on the GPU
Accelerad is a free suite of programs for fast and accurate lighting and daylighting analysis and visualization. It was originally developed by Nathaniel Jones at the MIT Sustainable Design Lab and continues to be developed independently. It is modeled after the industry standard Radiance software suite developed by Greg Ward at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. In order to allow for smooth adoption among Radiance users and software developers, Accelerad maintains compatibility with Radiance file formats, materials, and command-line arguments.
Parallelism and the RTX architecture make Accelerad up to one hundred times faster than Radiance thanks to OptiX™, a graphics processing unit (GPU) based ray tracing engine. Accelerad is ideal for simulations that would be impractical to carry out on CPUs because of their size, such as rpict renderings with large numbers of ambient bounces or rtrace calculations over many thousands of sensor points. New compatibility with rcontrib allows fast simulation of annual climate-based daylighting metrics throgh three-phase and five-phase simulations.
AcceleradRT, the next generation in daylighting simulation, is an interactive interface for real-time daylighting, glare, and visual comfort analysis. AcceleradRT uses progressive path tracing to provide daylighitng simulation results in real time with validated accuracy. The tool produces visualizations along with light level and visual comfort readings, and it responds automatically to changes in the underlying geometric and material models. It includes AcceleradVR, an immersive visualization interface compatible with most virtual reality headsets.