“I will change the game and VR terminal markets based on the next-generation ray tracing graphics technology.”
Professor Park, who is recognized as Korea’s foremost authority in GPU ray tracing, teaches students of computer science and engineering at Sejong University. He said, “Recently, Microsoft Corporation has decided to support ray tracing for the latest version of DirectX, the application programing interface (API),” adding, “Once this technology applies to other open source graphics APIs such as OpenGL, our real-time ray tracing technology will be acknowledged for its value.”
Ray racing is one of the 3D computer graphics techniques. It is intended to generate images with a very high degree of visual realism by tracing the path of light that is emitted from a virtual light source to objects and then reflects off their surface. Since great quantities of data must be computed, the real-time implementation of ray tracing was thought to be almost impossible.
Professor Park developed a technique for the real-time implementation of ray tracing 10 years ago. In 2010, he jointly launched Siliconarts, a fabless company, and successfully commercialized RayCore semiconductor chips that allow for real-time ray tracing. At that time, it was evaluated as a groundbreaking technology by influential foreign media and graphic experts. EE Times, a U.S. electronics industry magazine, selected Siliconarts as one of Silicon 60: Startups to Watch in 2015. CEO Jon Peddie of Jon Peddie Research, the industry’s market research firm for the graphics industry, stated, “RayCore semiconductors can set the number of ray tracing up to 15 levels. This is an incredible technology.”
However, because the influential APIs did not support the real-time ray tracing, the business was not very successful. Professor Park said, “Now that the ecosystem has been prepared, the relevant markets will be boosted.”
Professor Park keeps on conducting various derivatives research based on his real-time ray tracing technology. For example, he is devoted to the development of mobile GPU hardware for hyper realistic real-time virtual reality and the mobile platform-based entertainment VR technology, which are funded by the Ministry of Science and ICT. He remarked, “We are working on the development of the semiconductor technology optimized for VR by combining 3D audio and global illumination rendering technology to the real-time ray tracing technology,” adding, “Once this technology is commercialized, it will be able to change the landscape of the game machine and VR markets.”
Ray tracing-based 3D audio is a technique that tracks the light path to make realistic sounds. Sound sources are easily distinguished back and forth, and side to side. The reality level is also quite high. When you pull the trigger, it sounds different because the echo and degree of it differ depending on places such as an office, a park, and a forest.
Professor Park said, “GPU unicorn startups emerge in Korea that come close to NVIDIA,” adding, “As soon as the development is completed, “We will enter into the commercialization through licensing and direct sales.”