The Moon. Astronomically correct and photorealistic model, based on real lunar topography and cartography data. Highest resolution make it suitable for close fly-by, lunar landings, zoom-ins, etc.
33 megapixel albedo map (diffuse texture) is re-projected, aligned and corrected to match topography data geometry, and colored using real color images projection to achieve real surface colors and saturation effect.
There are two main materials - for Mental Ray (displace + additional bump) and for Scanline rendering (normal map + bump). Mental ray is highly recommended for zooms (when shadows are important). But for views when planet is entirely fits FullHD format frame, scanline version indistinguishable from MR (and much faster).
Usually, textured spheres (especially with displacement) having some bugs on the poles. The shape used for this model is 'tweaked' by specific modifications stack, to increase uniform polygons density near poles, but not produce N-gons and still being adjustable by editing stack's bottom sphere parameters (type or segments number). Lunar North and South poles are very interesting and important regions supposed became a place of building Lunar Base or to render some 3D sci-fi scene about it. And this model is 'polar-friendly'.
Facts list: ~~~~~~~~
Polygons/vertex numbers stated here is a default setting in downloaded file, and can be easy changed in wide-range.
'Slider' manipulators give easy control of some model's parameters see self explanatory pictures.
Model file you downloaded is clear (properly named objects and materials) animated scene ready to render sequence of all Lunar phases (like all-phases turntable sequence).
Rendering time with Mental Ray - 25-60 seconds depending on zoom and framing. Intel i7 3.4GHz, 8GB RAM, 3DS Max 9.0, 64bit ,for 1200x1200 pix image .
All resulting texture maps are heavily edited, corrected and re-projected from initial public domain (NASA non-copyright license) sources. Also used author's own color photos and several images with author's permission. Final textures have no 'ready to use' public domain analogues online (with comparable quality level).
Don't forget to read some useful details, in Read-Me pdf-document within downloaded archive.
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