Fabricating BRDFs at High Spatial Resolution Using Wave Optics

Anat LevinDaniel GlasnerYing XiongFredo DurandBill FreemanWojciech MatusikTodd Zickler


Recent attempts to fabricate surfaces with custom reflectance functions boast impressive angular resolution, yet their spatial resolution is limited. In this paper we present a method to construct spatially varying reflectance at a high resolution of up to 220dpi, orders of magnitude greater than previous attempts, albeit with a lower angular resolution. The resolution of previous approaches is limited by the machining, but more fundamentally, by the geometric optics model on which they are built. Beyond a certain scale geometric optics models break down and wave effects must be taken into account. We present an analysis of incoherent reflectance based on wave optics and gain important insights into reflectance design. We further suggest and demonstrate a practical method, which takes into account the limitations of existing micro-fabrication techniques such as photolithography to design and fabricate a range of reflection effects, based on wave interference.

  • Paper - to appear in SIGGRAPH 2013.
  • Tech Report on BRDF control using metallic powders
  • Video showing fabrication results images under varying illumination
  • Slides

Fabricated wafer