Printing Petra: 3D printing project to document archaeological sites in MENA
The foundation will distribute 5,000 3D cameras partners and volunteers to photograph the heritage sites in the Middle East. (Al Bawaba/File)
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The civilisation and human heritage of the region must be preserved for the future generations, stated Mohammed Abdullah Al Gergawi, Vice-Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Managing Director of Dubai Museum of the Future Foundation.
"It is important to preserve heritage sites as they serve as a source of inspiration for innovators and pioneers to build the future," he said on the occasion of the announcement of the strategic partnership of Dubai Museum of the Future Foundation with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) and the UK-based Institute for Digital Archaeology (IDA), a joint venture between Harvard University and the University of Oxford.
The global partnership will help preserve the archaeological sites in the region by documenting them using three-dimensional imaging technology to rebuild them through 3D printing technology if they are exposed to any threats.
Stating that archaeological sites are not just stone structures, Al Gergawi described the heritage landmarks in the region as crucial pieces in the great legacy of human achievements and called for global efforts to protect them. "What we are doing today is part of our efforts to give back to the history of our region and build on the achievements of our rich past," he said.
He said it is a global responsibility to preserve our heritage, taking into account the valuable contributions of the region to the progressive march of humanity,
Al Gergawi said it is the vision of His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to develop human capabilities based on the great values of the past and making them essential elements in the comprehensive sustainable development of the future.
Dubai Museum will play vital role in the global project to document the heritage monuments of the region by taking up to one million digital images of these sites using three-dimensional imaging technology until end of year 2015. The project will be carried out under the supervision of a group of archaeologists from Harvard University and the University of Oxford in cooperation with Unesco.
IDA in collaboration with Dubai Museum has created a portal to collect the images and prepared a plan to communicate with the media and social networking sites to launch a comprehensive information campaign on the project.
The foundation plans to announce educational initiatives to support the project and build an electronic platform to manage the massive database of archaeological images. It will distribute 5,000 3D cameras to partners and volunteers to photograph the heritage sites in the region. Images collected from volunteers and partners will be indexed and kept ready for the 3D printing phase of the project.
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