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Preserving Mexican cultural heritage through 3D modelling

Britt Lonneville (UGent) , Berdien De Roo (UGent) , Bart De Wit (UGent) , Cornelis Stal (UGent) , Alain De Wulf (UGent) and Philippe De Maeyer (UGent)
Author
Organization
Abstract
The technique of 3D modelling is currently gaining in importance in several fields of research, ranging from geology over architecture to archaeology. Improving computational capabilities and acquisition methods such as photo modelling and laser scanning allow to generate realistic and highly accurate 3D models of real world objects. Especially in archaeology and cultural heritage, where objects or structures are subject to deformation, this technique can aid researchers to study objects in their original state and context. Mexico, having some of the world’s greatest examples of Mayan culture, could certainly benefit from the introduction of 3D models in its cultural heritage management. These models would not only allow the creation of an inventory of its archaeological sites, but also form the basis for a 3D or 4D - including time - archaeological geographic information system (GIS). Such a GIS could provide extensive analytical tools and allow a thorough inspection of existing cultural heritage. Furthermore, cultural heritage departments with a limited budget and/or IT knowledge could benefit from these models using low-cost and straightforward methods such as Google Earth for visualisation and inspection purposes. These hypotheses are tested through a case study on the Mayan site Edzna (Campeche, Mexico) which was set up in close collaboration with the local department of Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia (INAH). In November 2013, field work was conducted on the site, using photo modelling supplemented with total station and GPS measurements to document the temples. To be able to model such large structures, aerial platforms for photography were introduced. Both an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) and helium balloons were employed at the site, resulting in high resolution and highly accurate 3D models of all structures. Consequently, these models are disclosed through several channels, including a website, game engine videos and Google Earth and placed at INAH’s disposal. Future research might involve repeating the same process on neighbouring archaeological sites to extend this 3D inventory, considering new ways of employing these models and looking into possibilities to create a full-fledged 3D or 4D GIS and thus being able to perform extensive analyses on the data.
Keywords
GIS, photo modelling, 3D, Mexico, cultural heritage

Citation

Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

MLA
Lonneville, Britt, Berdien De Roo, Bart De Wit, et al. “Preserving Mexican Cultural Heritage Through 3D Modelling.” Jeunes Chercheurs Outre-mer, Journée De Rencontre, Résumés. 2014. Print.
APA
Lonneville, B., De Roo, B., De Wit, B., Stal, C., De Wulf, A., & De Maeyer, P. (2014). Preserving Mexican cultural heritage through 3D modelling. Jeunes Chercheurs Outre-mer, Journée de rencontre, Résumés. Presented at the Journée de rencontre “Jeunes Chercheurs Outre-mer.”
Chicago author-date
Lonneville, Britt, Berdien De Roo, Bart De Wit, Cornelis Stal, Alain De Wulf, and Philippe De Maeyer. 2014. “Preserving Mexican Cultural Heritage Through 3D Modelling.” In Jeunes Chercheurs Outre-mer, Journée De Rencontre, Résumés.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Lonneville, Britt, Berdien De Roo, Bart De Wit, Cornelis Stal, Alain De Wulf, and Philippe De Maeyer. 2014. “Preserving Mexican Cultural Heritage Through 3D Modelling.” In Jeunes Chercheurs Outre-mer, Journée De Rencontre, Résumés.
Vancouver
1.
Lonneville B, De Roo B, De Wit B, Stal C, De Wulf A, De Maeyer P. Preserving Mexican cultural heritage through 3D modelling. Jeunes Chercheurs Outre-mer, Journée de rencontre, Résumés. 2014.
IEEE
[1]
B. Lonneville, B. De Roo, B. De Wit, C. Stal, A. De Wulf, and P. De Maeyer, “Preserving Mexican cultural heritage through 3D modelling,” in Jeunes Chercheurs Outre-mer, Journée de rencontre, Résumés, Brussels, Belgium, 2014.
@inproceedings{6842885,
  abstract     = {The technique of 3D modelling is currently gaining in importance in several fields of research, ranging from geology over architecture to archaeology. Improving computational capabilities and acquisition methods such as photo modelling and laser scanning allow to generate realistic and highly accurate 3D models of real world objects. Especially in archaeology and cultural heritage, where objects or structures are subject to deformation, this technique can aid researchers to study objects in their original state and context.
Mexico, having some of the world’s greatest examples of Mayan culture, could certainly benefit from the introduction of 3D models in its cultural heritage management. These models would not only allow the creation of an inventory of its archaeological sites, but also form the basis for a 3D or 4D - including time - archaeological geographic information system (GIS). Such a GIS could provide extensive analytical tools and allow a thorough inspection of existing cultural heritage. Furthermore, cultural heritage departments with a limited budget and/or IT knowledge could benefit from these models using low-cost and straightforward methods such as Google Earth for visualisation and inspection purposes.
These hypotheses are tested through a case study on the Mayan site Edzna (Campeche, Mexico) which was set up in close collaboration with the local department of Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia (INAH). In November 2013, field work was conducted on the site, using photo modelling supplemented with total station and GPS measurements to document the temples. To be able to model such large structures, aerial platforms for photography were introduced. Both an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) and helium balloons were employed at the site, resulting in high resolution and highly accurate 3D models of all structures. Consequently, these models are disclosed through several channels, including a website, game engine videos and Google Earth and placed at INAH’s disposal.
Future research might involve repeating the same process on neighbouring archaeological sites to extend this 3D inventory, considering new ways of employing these models and looking into possibilities to create a full-fledged 3D or 4D GIS and thus being able to perform extensive analyses on the data.},
  author       = {Lonneville, Britt and De Roo, Berdien and De Wit, Bart and Stal, Cornelis and De Wulf, Alain and De Maeyer, Philippe},
  booktitle    = {Jeunes Chercheurs Outre-mer, Journée de rencontre, Résumés},
  keywords     = {GIS,photo modelling,3D,Mexico,cultural heritage},
  language     = {eng},
  location     = {Brussels, Belgium},
  title        = {Preserving Mexican cultural heritage through 3D modelling},
  year         = {2014},
}