3D Imaging Technology:
A look at current applications in the field of cultural heritage preservation
As 3D imaging becomes more ubiquitous, its applications in cultural heritage preservation continue to proliferate. While 3D imaging does not replace other preservation technologies and techniques completely, it provides new possibilities. Not only can 3D imaging aid in documentation, research and replication for professional use, but it also creates new educational opportunities for the patrons of cultural heritage institutions. According to Wahiowiak & Karas (2009), “In a North American context, 3D scanning of cultural material continues to be new and largely uncharted territory”; however, “the success of 3D scanning projects has resulted in the recent expansion of commercial 3D technology designed with an eye to heritage applications” (p. 143). This makes it an exciting and largely experimental time for cultural heritage institutions, who are now discovering the limits and capabilities of this technology.