Benjamin STANGL1 / Peter FERSCHIN1 / Peter JÁNOSI2 / Iman KULITZ1

(1Institute of Architectural Sciences, Digital Architecture and Planning, Vienna University of Technology, Austria / 2Institute for Egyptology, Vienna University, Austria)

The prime objective of this project is to explore the potentials of interactive simulation in the context of Virtual Archaeology. The Project researches theoretical aspects of the topic of virtual spaces as well as a practical case study comparing different technologies showing how interactive simulation tools can be used in Virtual Archaeology. The main focus of the project is to investigate and present possible solutions for interactive navigation and virtual information systems for different applications purposes. The potential fields of applications are the implementation in exhibitions as a part of archaeological museums, the use as education tools as well as the support of information exchange in research projects.
An example case deals with a virtual model of the Queen Mersyankh III Mastaba in Giza, Egypt. On the basis of this example-model a case study comparing three applications will show their technical possibilities and practical implementation. The three technologies to be compared are Google Earth, Adobe 3D PDF, and the game engine, Unity.
Each of the three applications can be used for interactive virtual walkthroughs in digital building models. On top of that the applications offer the capability through application programming interface to customize and enhance user interaction with specific functions. The advanced use of Google Earth offers the possibility to integrate georeferenced user generated maps, pictures, reports, 3D models, and more within the platform of Google Earth. Adobe 3D PDF allows to implement and readout metadata of the 3D geometry. Game engines can function to simulate real-time walkthroughs with the game’s navigation interface.
These technologies are not yet established in the profession of architecture and building simulation but all of them have a high potential for simulation purposes.

Keywords: virtual archaeology, interactivity, simulation, Queen Mersyankh III Mastaba