THE FUSION OF EXTERNAL AND INTERNAL 3D PHOTOGRAMMETRIC MODELS AS A TOOL TO INVESTIGATE THE ANCIENT HUMAN/CAVE INTERACTION: THE LA SASSA CASE STUDY
Keywords: Cave Archaeology, Structure from Motion, 3D model, GCP, Photogrammetry, Sassa cave, UAV
Abstract. Caves have been used by humans and animals for several thousand years until present but, at these time scales, their structures can rapidly change due to erosion and concretion processes. For this reason, the availability of precise 3D models improves the data quality and quantity allowing the reconstruction of their ancient appearance, structure and origin. However, caves are usually characterised by lack of light, high percentage of relative humidity, narrow spaces and complex morphology. Thus, quite often the traditional topographic instruments cannot be employed. In the La Sassa cave (Sonnino, Italy) a huge deposit ranging from Pleistocene to the Second World War has been found and stratigraphic evidence suggested that the shape of the cave and its entrance might have been different. In this paper, the fusion of the internal and external 3D photogrammetric models of the La Sassa, made to support the archaeological excavations, is presented, A Nikon camera with a fisheye lens and a smartphone camera have been used to survey the internal part of the cave, while an aerial drone has been employed for the external area. The two models have been georeferenced and scaled using GCPs acquired by a double frequency GNSS (GPS and GLONASS) receiver. A low-resolution DTM derived from a previous aerial laser scanning survey and the 3D models have been elaborated in CloudCompare environment to highlight the complete morphology of the cave and its surroundings.