May 1, 2014

The Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology in London has launched an interactive online 3D object library, allowing visitors to view the artefacts in the same way as curators.

The Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology is part of University College London (UCL) Museums & Collections. The museum has one of the most impressive collections of Egyptian and Sudanese archaeology in the world - it contains over 80,000 objects, inlcuding one of the earliest pieces of linen from Egypt (about 5000 BC); a fragment from the first kinglist or calendar (about 2900 BC); the earliest example of metal and glazing from Egypt etc. Unfortunately it only has space to display a small percentage.

With funding from Arts Council England, the Museum is making high quality 3D images of artefacts from its collection available through a web-based library. The library allows visitors to rotate and zoom in on the 3D images of artefacts, catching fine details often not visible to the naked eye.

The aim of our 3D imaging programme is to allow visitors to see artefacts in ways not possible in traditional museum displays. The 3D image library gives online visitors the type of access only curators have – the public can now virtually handle objects and closely examine the smallest details of their composition." says Tonya Nelson, Head of Museums and Collections.

The Museum is at the forefront of 3D scanning in the museum and archaeological world. Its 3D Petrie project is powered by cutting-edge photographic 3D imaging and scanning technology and WebGL interactive visualisation. The 3DPetrie team has developed a unique methodology combining reference photography and 3D imaging with a curatorial review of the actual object to its digital counterpart. It hopes to share this process with other museums soon.

The Museum said that it plans to expand the image library to include a section in which visitors will be able to learn the history of objects from their use in Ancient Egypt to their excavation in the 19th century to their present location in the Petrie Museum galleries through a series of 3D-enriched navigation tools.


Posted in 3D Scanning

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