Vehicular racing simulation: a MEL scripting approach



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Texas A&M University


The purpose of this thesis is to develop an automated technique for controlling the animation of computer-generated cars for the application of motorsports, also known as car racing. The basic idea is similar to previous work simulating flocks of birds and schools of fish. This simulation system provides a behavior model for each car and driver in a group of cars that enables them to race on a track while avoiding collisions. The technique is implemented using a commercial software package, called MAYA, utilizing its scripting language and built-in dynamics engine. While not a complete real-world dynamic simulation, the cars exhibit realism in both racing behavior and in visual motion attributes. This system allows the animator to control the number of vehicles, their properties, and their general path using an interactive interface. The automated technique replaces manual animation of each individual car and expedites production for animation or live-action effects film that includes computer-generated racing cars.