David Bibby

(Landesamt für Denkmalpflege, Konstanz, Germany)

In summer 2003 at the very start of the excavations on the Münsterplatz in Konstanz/Bodensee (Cathedral Square, Constance/Lake Constance, SW Germany) the remains of a strongly built, polygonal late Roman watch tower and almost 30 m of defensive wall were uncovered. By late summer 2004 the remains, of extreme importance for the history of the city of Konstanz, had been uncovered to a depth of two metres and seen to be in an excellent state of preservation.
The question soon arose as to the best recording method for these important objects and the decision was quickly made to scan them. This decision was positively influenced by the continuous development of the program “Aspect3D” by Arctron Ltd, which allows analytical work on the 3d model and enables a 3d stone-for-stone transformation of the scan results into the CAD-environment inhabited by the rest of the excavation recording.
This short paper at the beginning of the session “Questioning digital techniques in archaeology” also briefly discusses further scientific, financial and display aspects. One result of the scan is an animated reconstruction of the watchtower created for a special exhibition in the Konstanz branch of the Baden-Württemberg State Archaeological Museum. A reconstruction virtually built, as it were, on firm foundations.