Bentley Motors use Intel Embree via CATIA V5 from Dassault Systemes using their DeltaGen renderer and migrated into Maya. Image courtesy Bentley Motors Limited; images were generated with Intel® OSPRay Studio.

Intel Embree Wins Scientific and Technical Academy Award

Intel's open-source ray-traced rendering application impressed the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences

Intel's open-source ray-traced rendering application Embree impressed the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences

This week, several developers behind Intel Embree became part of the Hollywood crowd.

Sven Woop, Carsten Benthin, Attila Afra, Manfred Ernst, and Ingo Wald—part of the team behind Intel Embree—received the Scientific and Technical Awards from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for “early research and technical direction of the Intel Embree Ray Tracing Library.”

“For the past decade, the Intel Embree Ray Tracing Library has provided a high-performance, industry-leading, CPU-based ray-geometry intersection framework through well-engineered open source code, supported by a comprehensive set of research publications. It has become an indispensable resource for motion picture production rendering,” wrote the Academy. 

Embree is a library of open-source ray-tracing kernels developed at Intel. As a component of the oneAPI Rendering Toolkit, Embree is optimized for specific Intel CPUs. The company's plan is “to map all the Intel oneAPI Rendering Toolkit libraries to take advantage of future Intel Xe GPUs using a platform XPU approach (using cooperative computing with CPUs and GPUs),” explained Intel PR.

The list of engineering applications that have incorporated the Embree and OSPRay (which incorporates Embree) includes AutoCAD, Autodesk Revit, Autodesk 3ds Maya, Ansys EnSight, Siemens Star CCM+, Corona from Chaos, and more.

oneAPI is Intel's countermeasure to GPU maker NVIDIA's CUDA, a GPU-based programming environment. Intel describes oneAPI as “a unified programming model for CPUs, GPUs, FPGAs, and other accelerators.”

Intel's latest initiative to broach the GPU market, dominated by NVIDIA and AMD, is the Intel Xe GPU line. Intel's earlier attempt at a general purpose GPU product with the Intel Larrabbee architecture fizzled out in 2010. 

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Kenneth Wong

Kenneth Wong is Digital Engineering’s resident blogger and senior editor. Email him at [email protected] or share your thoughts on this article at

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