(TU Vienna, Institute of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, Vienna, Austria)

Abstract: An archaeological excavation generally starts with collecting available documentation data such as maps, images, and drawings, representing both, the current as well as the historical status of the respective site. Additionally, geometrical models are nowadays often available. During the excavation, various datasets are collected including prospection data (e.g. geo-radar), thermal images (e.g. at facades or buildings), high resolution areal images (e.g. UVA-collected), close range images, or laser scanning, just to name a few. All these datasets have in common that they are likely to be georeferenced. I.e. by means of adequate processing, they can be transformed into one project coordinate system for subsequent overall interpretation and analysis of the site. This may be typically realized by a GIS. Although such systems are very popular for this, they suffer from several restrictions as they generally require expert knowledge, an adequate hardware infrastructure, and they often enable the application of 2D-data only. To overcome this, we developed an automated workflow for the generation of a 4D-multimedia application for the documentation of digital excavation data of an excavation site based on the 3D geometrical model and considering the time component as well. By means of current multimedia technologies, the representation of the available documentation data is enabled at numerous devices including PC, tablets, and smartphones making the data accessible at any place at any time. While generally the collected archaeological data is used for the purpose of generating the archaeological expertise only, the proposed workflow, i.e. the 4D-multimedia application representing the collected data of the excavation site, enables additional possibilities for subsequent application of the results including supporting respective construction work, being the foundation for further decisions, or as medium for marketing and public relations. The applicability of the workflow is demonstrated on examples representing an excavation at the UNESCO World Heritage Site Schloß Schönbrunn.

Keywords: 3d modeling, documentation, archiving, visualization, multimedia