Chapter 4

Bounding Volumes

Directly testing the geometry of two objects for collision against each other is often very expensive, especially when objects consist of hundreds or even thousands of polygons. To minimize this cost, object bounding volumes are usually tested for overlap before the geometry intersection test is performed.

A bounding volume (BV) is a single simple volume encapsulating one or more objects of more complex nature. The idea is for the simpler volumes (such as boxes and spheres) to have cheaper overlap tests than the complex objects they bound. Using bounding volumes allows for fast overlap rejection tests because one need only test against the complex bounded geometry when the initial overlap query for the bounding ...

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