We previously reported that everyone’s favorite open-source graphics API had added ray tracing extensions. Today, Khronos Group published the final specifications for Vulkan Ray Tracing, allowing developers to incorporate ray tracing into their projects.
This is a significant milestone as it is the industry’s first open, cross-vendor, cross-platform standard for ray tracing acceleration – and can be deployed either using existing GPU compute or dedicated ray tracing cores. Vulkan Ray Tracing will be familiar to anyone who has used DirectX Raytracing (DXR) in DirectX 12, but also introduces advanced functionality such as the ability to load balance ray tracing setup operations onto the host CPU.
Ray tracing has steadily gained support over the last few years. Now that developers have open-source options, adoption rates will likely increase even further. It also helps that AMD and NVIDIA’s latest graphics cards are powerful enough to run games at higher frame rates with ray tracing enabled.