Modelling Medieval Vaults: Digital Simulation of the North Transept Vault of St Mary, Nantwich, England

Digital and virtual heritage is often associated with the recreation of lost artefacts and architecture; however, we can also investigate works that were not completed, using digital tools and techniques. Here we explore physical evidence of a fourteenth-century Gothic vault located in the north transept of St Mary’s church in Nantwich, Cheshire, using existing springer stones that are built into the walls as a starting point. Digital surveying tools are used to document the architecture, followed by an analysis process to hypothesise and simulate possible design solutions, had the vault been completed. A number of options, both two-dimensionally and three-dimensionally, are discussed based on comparison with examples of other contemporary vaults, thus adding another specimen to the corpus of vault designs. Dissemination methods such as digital models and 3D prints are also explored as possible resources for demonstrating what the finished vault might have looked like for heritage interpretation and other purposes.

A Multi-Modal Virtual Walkthrough of the Virtual Past and Present Based on Panoramic View, Crowd Simulation and Acoustic Heritage on Mobile Platform

This research presents a multi-modal simulation in the reconstruction of the past and the construction of present in digital cultural heritage on mobile platform. In bringing the present life, the virtual environment is generated through a presented scheme for rapid and efficient construction of 360° panoramic view. Then, acoustical heritage model and crowd model are presented and improvised into the 360° panoramic view. For the reconstruction of past life, the crowd is simulated and rendered in an old trading port. However, the keystone of this research is in a virtual walkthrough that shows the virtual present life in 2D and virtual past life in 3D, both in an environment of virtual heritage sites in George Town through mobile device. Firstly, the 2D crowd is modelled and simulated using OpenGL ES 1.1 on mobile platform. The 2D crowd is used to portray the present life in 360° panoramic view of a virtual heritage environment based on the extension of Newtonian Laws. Secondly, the 2D crowd is animated and rendered into 3D with improved variety and incorporated into the virtual past life using Unity3D Game Engine. The behaviours of the 3D models are then simulated based on the enhancement of the classical model of Boid algorithm. Finally, a demonstration system is developed and integrated with the models, techniques and algorithms of this research. The virtual walkthrough is demonstrated to a group of respondents and is evaluated through the user-centred evaluation by navigating around the demonstration system. The results of the evaluation based on the questionnaires have shown that the presented virtual walkthrough has been successfully deployed through a multi-modal simulation and such a virtual walkthrough would be particularly useful in a virtual tour and virtual museum applications.

Design and Development of Architectural Model Darul Ridzuan Museum

This paper focuses on the 3D reconstruction of the architectural design of Darul Ridzuan Museum. It has concentrated on designing exterior part of the building according to colored digital photo of the real museum. Besides viewing the architecture, walkthroughs are generated for the user to control it in an easier way. User can travel through the museum to get the feel of the environment and to explore the design of the museum as a whole; both exterior and interior. The result has shown positive result in terms of realism, navigation, collision detection, suitability, usability and user-s acceptance. In brief, the 3D virtual museum has provided an alternative to present a real museum.