ISPRS Annals of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences
Publications Copernicus
Articles | Volume IV-2/W2
16 Aug 2017
 | 16 Aug 2017

Terrestrial laser scanning for heritage conservation: the Cologne Cathedral documentation project

D. Pritchard, J. Sperner, S. Hoepner, and R. Tenschert

Keywords: Terrestrial laser scanning, 3D, heritage conservation, Gothic architecture, Cologne Cathedral

Abstract. 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.