Feb 17, 2017 | By Tess

For those who are just as engulfed in Netflix’s The Crown as I am, the latest 3D scanning news coming out of the UK will surely warm your tea right up. Engineers from the University of Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG) have teamed up with the British Sugarcraft Guild (BSG) to recreate a full-sized replica of Queen Elizabeth II’s wedding cake, all with the help of 3D scanning and modeling technologies.

The amazing wedding cake, originally designed by Peek Frean for the 1947 nuptials, was such a sight to behold that an icing sugar replica was made of it and displayed for years. The six-foot tall, six-tiered cake model was first on display at the Peek Frean & Co factory until it closed down in 1989, when it was moved to a South-East London museum. Sadly, during a location change for the museum, the stunning cake model was defaced and vandalized, almost to a point of no return. This was in 2015.

(Left) Replica of the wedding cake pre-vandalism, (Right) the cake model post-vandalism

Now, however, thanks to the ingenuity of WMG engineers, Queen Elizabeth II’s wedding cake could be restored to its full, 600 lb glory. The initiative, led by Professor Mark Williams from the WMG and the BSG, is using 3D scanning and 3D modeling to recreate the model. More specifically, a 3D scanner was used to scan the destroyed cake model (within a 0.1mm accuracy), and 3D modeling was used to digitally reconstruct and repair the model.

“It was fantastic to apply our technology to such an exciting project and help restore such an iconic cake to its former glory, especially in the year of the Queen’s Golden Anniversary,” commented Williams. “Usually we are working on engineering-related challenges, so to be able to take our expertise and transfer that to something totally different and so historically significant was a really interesting opportunity.”

With the detailed 3D models ready, tiers of the cake were sent out to seven BSG regions across the UK, along with necessary materials, templates, and plans for the reconstruction. At this stage in the process, the initial coating of the cake tiers is complete, and BSG members are now preparing to start the final detailed decoration of the royal wedding cake. When that stage is complete, a small team of BSG members will assemble the tiers of the cake at the Peek Frean Museum. This is expected to take place at the end of summer.

"The British Sugarcraft Guild was honoured to be invited to recreate the replica of the Queen's wedding cake for the Peek Frean Museum,” said Judith Lynn, BSG National Vice Chairman. “Our members have shown enormous enthusiasm for the project and the generosity of all our sponsors has been amazing.The experience of working with WMG at the University of Warwick in creating the 3-D models to enable the moulded elements of the cake to be reproduced has been very rewarding. It illustrates perfectly how modern technology and traditional crafts can work in harmony to recreate such an important historic piece of sugar art."

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip will celebrate their 70th wedding anniversary this year.

 

 

Posted in 3D Scanning

 

 

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