High-accuracy 3D modeling inside the Great Pyramid
In 2017, a research team formed by Nagoya University and other institutions announced the discovery of an unknown giant void inside the Great Pyramid of Giza located in Egypt. The government of Egypt designated the Higashi Nippon International University for "The Great Pyramid Project" launched in April 2018.
Mr. Sakuji Yoshimura, President of Higashi Nippon International University and project leader, recalls: “The Egyptian Minister of Antiquities called, and wanted to know if this announcement could be verified scientifically. Therefore, we started a scientific verification process where the inside of the pyramid was scanned with cameras and then the data converted to 3D models.”
|Hardware||Phase One 100-million pixel ultra-high resolution camera|
|Software||Pix4Dmapper photogrammetry software|
|Outputs||3D model |
Using the right tools for the project
JEPICO, with its high-performance 100-million pixel camera, and Hitachi Systems, which has advanced technical capabilities and extensive experience in 3D modeling with images using Pix4Dmapper, joined this project as partners.
The key to accurately modeling the interior of the Great Pyramid, where lighting conditions are challenging, was the project members’ know-how in capturing data, as well as the technical expertise in utilizing various features of Pix4Dmapper software. Even for the dark and narrow King’s Chamber inside the Great Pyramid, the JEPICO and Hitachi Systems team succeeded in generating an accurate 3D model that provides a faithful reproduction of the real colors and shapes.
Now that remote investigation is enabled by the accurate 3D reconstructions, the team has high hopes for new archeological discoveries, such as the ability to distinguish materials by their image color.
Mr. Yoshimura comments, "I was simply astounded at how, instead of using CGI (computer generated imagery) for reproduction or similar methods, real images were used for the modeling, using the colors of the actual objects. Clear and sharp images and videos like these of the King's Chamber have never been seen before and will be extremely useful in future pyramid studies."
Special thanks to the members of Hitachi Systems and to ImageONE, our premier reseller in Japan, for their help in preparing this article.