3D HIGH-QUALITY MODELING OF SMALL AND COMPLEX ARCHAEOLOGICAL INSCRIBED OBJECTS: RELEVANT ISSUES AND PROPOSED METHODOLOGY
Keywords: 3D Modeling, Close-range Photogrammetry, Laser Scanner, Focus Stacking, Small Inscribed Objects
Abstract. 3D modelling of inscribed archaeological finds (such as tablets or small objects) has to consider issues related to the correct acquisition and reading of ancient inscriptions, whose size and degree of conservation may vary greatly, in order to guarantee the needed requirements for visual inspection and analysis of the signs. In this work, photogrammetry and laser scanning were tested in order to find the optimal sensors and settings, useful to the complete 3D reconstruction of such inscribed archaeological finds, paying specific attention to the final geometric accuracy and operative feasibility in terms of required sensors and necessary time. Several 3D modelling tests were thus carried out on four replicas of inscribed objects, which are characterized by different size, material and epigraphic peculiarities. Specifically, in relation to photogrammetry, different cameras and lenses were used and a robust acquisition setup, able to guarantee a correct and automatic alignment of images during the photogrammetric process, was identified. The focus stacking technique was also investigated. The Canon EOS 1200D camera equipped with prime lenses and iPad camera showed respectively the best and the worst accuracy. From an overall geometric point of view, 50 mm and 100 mm lenses achieved very similar results, but the reconstruction of the smallest details with the 50 mm lens was not appropriate. On the other hand, the acquisition time for the 50 mm lens was considerably lower than the 100 mm one. In relation to laser scanning, the ScanRider 1.2 model was used. The 3D models produced (in less time than using photogrammetry) clearly highlight how this scanner is able to reconstruct even the high frequencies with high resolution. However, the models in this case are not provided with texture. For these reasons, a robust procedure for integrating the texture of photogrammetry models with the mesh of laser scanning models was also carried out.