These 3-D Scans Are Digitally Saving Ancient Monuments Before ISIS Blows Them Up

by Adele Peters
Fast Co., Oct 20, 2015

Image: The first monument to be 3-D scanned for the project was the Ziggurat of Ur in Iraq, originally built around 4,000 years ago, and restored in the sixth century B.C. Courtesy of Fast Co.(Image: The first monument to be 3-D scanned for the project was the Ziggurat of Ur in Iraq, originally built around 4,000 years ago, and restored in the sixth century B.C. Courtesy of Fast Co.)

In August, ISIS militants blew up the legendary and beautiful 2,000-year-old Temple of Bel in the ancient city of Palmyra, Syria, saying that it promoted “idolatry.” At the beginning of October, they destroyed the equally historic Arch of Triumph leading to the site. Now, some experts are afraid the entire ancient city—one of the most spectacular ancient sites in the world—could be obliterated in as little as three months.

Throughout the Middle East, hundreds of historic sites are now at risk of total destruction because of war.

A nonprofit called CyArk is racing to 3-D scan ancient architecture to digitally preserve it for the future, so it can later be recreated in virtual reality or rebuilt on the ground. In a new initiative called Project Anga, they’re working with the International Council of Monuments and Sites to digitally document dozens of at-risk sites in the region, starting with Syria and Iraq. Read more…

Comments are closed.