Creating a 3D database of Svalbard’s historical sites: 3D inventory and virtual reconstruction of a mining building at Camp Asbestos, Wedel Jarlsberg Land, Svalbard
Most of the historical sites of the Svalbard Archipelago comprise remains of whaling stations, trappers’ huts and mining activities. Although most parts of Svalbard lie within the boundaries of national parks, not all cultural remains have been thoroughly documented and catalogued. The rapid development of modelling software allows for (re-)creating the shapes of some of these historical objects in three-dimensional (3D) computer space, for use in research, education and cultural heritage conservation. Ideally, a database of 3D vector shapes representing various historical sites would be made available as an open-access resource. This article shows how such a database could be started. During the summer of 2015, a 3D inventory of the remains at some historical sites in north-western Wedel Jarlsberg Land, Svalbard, was performed with the use of a Leica C10 laser scanner. One was a mining building at a site known as Camp Asbestos, in Asbestodden, in inner Recherchefjorden. Later, data on its history were gathered and a 3D digital reconstruction was done. The end result consists of: (1) a model of the building in its current ruined state; (2) a model of the assumed shape around the time of asbestos mining activities in 1921; and (3) documented changes in its shape between those time periods. We plan to perform similar documentation for other scanned objects and make all the data available via an open-access web server.
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