Terrestrial laser scanning for heritage conservation: the Cologne Cathedral documentation project
Contemporary terrestrial laser scanners and photogrammetric imaging systems are an invaluable tool in providing objectively precise, as-built records of existing architectural, engineering and industrial sites. The comprehensive three-dimensional (3D) recording of culturally important sites such as heritage buildings, monuments, and sites can serve a variety of invaluable purposes; the data can assist in the conservation, management, and repair of a structure, as well as provide a visually engaging educational resource for both the public and scholars. The acquired data acts as a form of digital preservation, a timeless virtual representation of the as-built structure. The technical capability of these systems is particularly suited for the documentation of a richly articulated and detailed building such as the high Gothic Cologne Cathedral.
The 3D documentation of the Cologne Cathedral UNESCO World Heritage Site is a multiphase project developed by Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh in partnership with the Fresenius University of Applied Sciences, Cologne, and the Metropolitankapitel der Hohen Domkirche Köln Dombauhütte. The project has also received generous support from Zoller + Fröhlich (Z+F) and the City of Cologne.