Today (April 18) is World Heritage Day, and technology company CyArk in collaboration with Google Arts & Culture have just launched the website Open Heritage. The site contains 3D scans of ancient monuments from 27 sites from around the world, including Bagan in Myanmar and Ayutthaya in Thailand!
CyArk’s data has already been used for various research purposes. For example, the data collected at Ayutthaya, Thailand—one of the sites featured in Open Heritage—was used by conservators to study the sinking of a temple after flooding in 2011. CyArk’s work at Bagan, the ancient city in Myanmar, Bagan, which was hit with a devastating 6.8-magnitude earthquake in 2016 that caused damage to several of its Buddhist temples, was incorporated into an Unesco pilot project to study how to best conserve monuments. That data is also plugged into Open Heritage in a virtual tour of Bagan, which shows how the area looked before and after the earthquake hit.
- Check Out the World’s Largest Archive Digitally Preserving At-Risk Heritage Sites (Smitsonian.com | 16 April 2018)
- Google’s 3D models are saving the world’s most at-risk heritage sites (Wired.com | 16 April 2018)
- Google will help preserve endangered historical sites in virtual reality (Verge | 16 April 2018)
- Google’s 3D scans aim to preserve historical sites (BBC | 18 April 2018)