Aug 15, 2016 | By Tess

While the Middle East may be making most of its headlines for its current state of instability, we have a slightly more encouraging story coming out of Iran today. The country’s advanced manufacturing and material technologies development headquarters has announced it will be using 3D scanning and 3D printing technologies to restore and create replicas of the country’s famed and ancient monuments. Considering that Iran is the heir to one of the world’s oldest civilizations, the project could be a key part in the documentation and restoration of human history.

The goal of restoring and preserving its most ancient statues, monuments, and architectures is not new for Iran of course, as the country’s Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization has long had preservation as its key priority. Now, with the advancement of both 3D scanning and printing technologies, the doors have opened in significant ways for preservation efforts.

The preservation effort in Iran was initiated by a collaboration between Iran’s National Museum and the Vice Presidency for Science and Technology, which together selected a number of ancient monuments for the restoration project. So far, however, the selected monuments and locations have not been divulged. The ultimate goal of the project is to use advanced additive manufacturing technologies to eventually recreate exact replicas of Iran’s most ancient and valued sites.

The Behistun Inscription in Iran

Currently, the advanced manufacturing and material technologies development HQ is calling out to interested Iranian companies and parties who want to offer their expertise and participate in the restoration and preservation effort. The first phase will then consist of creating a digital 3D model of the sites and monuments using photogrammetry (a 3D scanning process that consists of stitching together multiple photos from various angles to create an accurate 3D model), 3D printing said model, and post-processing it.

As the project is still in its early stages, such details as the scale and use of the 3D printed monuments is not entirely clear. The advanced manufacturing and material technologies development HQ has only said that the final scale and additive manufacturing technologies used can be determined by the project managers.

Iran’s technological restoration effort is certainly not the first of its kind, as we’ve seen similar projects being executed in Syria, where a French startup has been painstakingly working to capture and restore the ancient fallen city of Palmyra using 3D scanning and digital modeling. Middle Eastern artefacts destroyed by ISIS have also been given a chance at restoration thanks to new technologies and the efforts of Project Mosul, which has been using old photographs, 3D modeling and 3D printing to recreate destroyed pieces at the Mosul Museum in Iraq.

Fortunately, in a world that often seems rampant with destruction, there are efforts being made to preserve the most ancient vestiges of human civilization, and now with new technologies like 3D scanning and 3D printing, these efforts can really be taken to the next level.

The Tomb of Cyrus the Great in Pasargadae, Iran

 

 

Posted in 3D Printing Application

 

 

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jean michel Puybouffat wrote at 8/18/2016 11:49:47 AM:

I am glad to see the capabilities offer by 3D printing join to affordable 3D scanner .



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