Fakultät Informatik

Particle-driven snow buildup


Snowfall is a common phenomena in most parts of the world and is often simulated in real-time applications using particle systems. However, this simulation is commonly restrained to visual effects without any influence on the existing scene geometry, whereas real-world heavy snowfall would drastically change the appearence of the scene over a certain period of time.

In this thesis, the student should explore methods to simulate realtime snow buildup on static scenes using density volumes and hybrid rendering methods.


The goal of this project is to implement a system that allows simulating snow buildup on small, static scenes using DirectX 11 Compute Shaders or CUDA. Main focus will be on the interaction between a simple particle system and density fields as well as the hybrid rendering of these fields in conjunction with a triangle mesh. The simulation as well as the rendering should run at interactive rates, aiming more for a plausible visual experience than physical correctness.

Depending on the progress, this theses may be extended to dynamic scenes and a more complex simulation allowing for snow redistribution.


  • Extensive experience with C++
  • Experience with OpenGL 3.0 or DirectX 10 (or later)

Desired skills and pluses

  • Experience with DirectX 11 Compute Shader or CUDA
  • Experience with volume rendering


Similar, though not realtime approach:  Wind-Driven Snow buildup Using a Level Set Approach




Matthias Niessner, our new Professor from Stanford University, offers a number of interesting topics for  master theses.


PhD positions on   Computational Fabrication and 3D Printing and  Photorealistic Rendering for Deep Learning and Online Reconstruction are available at the Computer Graphics & Visualization group.