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Title: Parallel and Hardware Implementations of Collision Detection Algorithms
Author: Fenton-May, Tristam
ISNI:       0000 0001 3459 8395
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2004
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In recent years many graphics processes, which have traditionally been implemented as software running on general purpose hardware, have re-emerged as low cost application specific hardware. This hardware is now available on many desktop machines to accelerate the rendering of graphical scenes, and thus allowing high quality real-time visualisation. Another aspect of simulation which is computationally expensive is collision detection. This document looks at existing algorithms for collision detection, and how they might be implemented using special purpose hardware to improve their efficiency. A general framework is described that allows multiple collision processing algorithms to be brought together to build a distributed collision farm. An implementation of this system was built using desktop PCs connected via a LAN. The farm is capable of processing collisions of up to a million polyhedra in real time using 30 (now outdated) machines. To achieve even greater speed a hardware implementation is described. The widely used Sweep & Prune algorithm forms part of many software collision systems, and this hM been implemented in hardware using a new type of hardware sorting array. A physical implementation has been built using VHDL and an Altera programmable logic device. The results show that a system using similar number of gates to a 486 (Le., about 1% of the size of a modern graphics processor) can perform this task faster than a processor farm comprised of 14 Intel Pentium Pro CPUs and a purely software implementation.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available