3D DIGITAL MODEL DATABASE APPLIED TO CONSERVATION AND RESEARCH OF WOODEN CONSTRUCTION IN CHINA
Protected by the Tai-Hang Mountains, Shanxi Province, located in north central China, is a highly prosperous, densely populated valley and considered to be one of the cradles of Chinese civilization. Its continuous habitation and rich culture have given rise to a large number of temple complexes and pavilions. Among these structures, 153 can be dated as early as from the Tang dynasty (618- 907C.E.) to the end of the Yuan dynasty (1279–1368C.E.) in Southern Shanxi area. The buildings are the best-preserved examples of wooden Chinese architecture in existence, exemplifying historic building technology and displaying highly intricate architectural decoration and detailing. They have survived war, earthquakes, and, in the last hundred years, neglect. In 2005, a decade-long conservation project was initiated by the State Administration of Cultural Heritage of China (SACH) to conserve and document these important buildings.
The conservation process requires stabilization, conservation of important features, and, where necessary, partial dismantlement in order to replace unsound structural elements. Project team of CHCC have developed a practical recording system that created a record of all building components prior to and during the conservation process. After that we are trying to establish a comprehensive database which include all of the 153 earlier buildings, through which we can easily entering, browse, indexing information of the wooden construction, even deep into component details. The Database can help us to carry out comparative studies of these wooden structures, and, provide important support for the continued conservation of these heritage buildings.
For some of the most important wooden structure, we have established three-dimensional models. Connected the Database with 3D Digital Model based on ArcGIS, we have developed 3D Digital Model Database for these cherish buildings. The 3D Digital Model Database helps us set up an integrate information inventory for wooden structure with their similar types in China, and; makes it much easier to carry out survey of these structures at any stage for the purpose of structure monitor. Large amounts of data in the wooden structure can be intuitively expressed graphically to show its spatial distribution; and we can make comprehensive assessment of the component group by observe the spatial pattern, or evaluate the whole building damage through the database. The most interesting is that, with the development of mobile terminal equipment, the 3D Digital Model Database of Wooden Structure can be displayed in virtual exhibition easily via the internet by them.