(Dipartimento di Meccanica, Italy)

Keywords: Egyptian funeral rituals, Unity 3D game platform, Archaeological Museum of Milan, Oculus Rift

This presentation shows an experimental VR set designed for the Archaeological Museum of Milan, conceived for being both engaging for the visitors and affordable for the museum. It is based on the Unity 3D game platform and a second generation Oculus Rift equipped with a Leap Motion device for managing some user interactions by tracking his hand gestures.
Based on this hardware a specific application has been designed, for explaining to non-experts the meaning of a few funerary objects and their hieroglyphic inscriptions, showing interesting aspects of some funerary rituals in the Ancient Egypt.
Four important and interesting artifacts were considered for this scope: two ushabty (figurine placed in tombs intended to act as servants for the deceased, to do manual labor in the afterlife), a wooden sarcophagus and a heart scarab, that had become, by the early New Kingdom, part of amulets protecting mummies.
The idea is to enhance the understanding of these Egypt artifacts’, starting by the comprehension of the objects and the meaning of the inscriptions through the explanation of the ancient Egyptian language, by augmenting the 3D representation of each object.
For this reason each model has been generated at high resolution in order to clearly see the symbols depicted or carved on the analyzed objects. The preliminary result is a set of user interactions that will allow to complete within next year a 3D virtual interactive tour regarding the “path of the dead”, a very important ritual in the ancient Egypt.