Earth texture and lighting problem

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Old 10 October 2012   #1
Earth texture and lighting problem

Hello All,

I am working on some astronomy animation for a client. One camera shot requires a scene of the earth rotating showing the surface moving from day to night. On the dark side of the earth the client wants to see the bright city lights. This would all be easily solvable if the earth was not tilted at 23.4 degrees - then the textures and the terminator would match up.
Here is my try and fail list so far:

1. Surface Luminance Utility plugged into a 2D V-Ramp with Day as material 1 and Night as material 2 (with some incandescence on the night so it shows up). Surface Luminance determines that only about 30% of the earth is in full sun, creates a foul looking jaggy terminator.

2. Ramp Shader with Brightness as the determining factor whether Day or Night material is displayed. Same problem as for surface luminance node, but with banding on the illuminated section as well.

3. Dividing the earth in half with Day material on eastern hemisphere and Night on western hemisphere with animation on the materials themselves, not the geometry. If the earth was not tilted, this would work fine. Can't seem to get a sane way to compensate for the Tilt.

4. Experimented with projectors - planar, perspective, spherical - but could not get more than one side of the earth displayed.

Maybe one of these solutions is partly right and I missing something? I do not have a high level of skill editing nodes in the hyper shade.
Any solutions or ideas you can come up with will be very much appreciated.
Thanks,
Kristina
 
Old 10 October 2012   #2
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