On Light Propagation in Dense Media: Models, Simulation, and Applications
The basic (phenomenological) model for light transport in complex media is the radiative transfer equation (RTE) -- an integro partial differential equation, which describes the transport, absorption, and scattering of photons in a dense medium.
We review various methods for the numerical solution of the RTE, and compare their advantages and limitations. We then describe a hierarchy of approximate models, that allow more rapid simulation while still providing sufficient accuracy in the relevant physical setting.
The fast simulation of light transport is a key ingredient for applications in biomedical imaging or non-destructive testing, which require the repeated simulation for various parameter constellations and excitation patterns.
The resulting algorithms can be further accelerated by parallelization and GPU programming, and hence allow for very fast 3D image reconstruction.