Application of SfM Photogrammetry in Byzantine ecclesiastical Architecture

Application of SfM Photogrammetry in Byzantine ecclesiastical ArchitectureMichalis Ioannou, Antonios Antonopoulos
Metrisi Ltd, [email protected] ALL 3D

Abstract – This paper explores the application of the digital technology, Structure-from-Motion (SfM) photogrammetry in the case of Byzantine ecclesiastical architecture. SfM photogrammetry was used for the 3D documentation of two greek Orthodox churches, Taxiarches church in Ermioni and Agioi Anargyroi church in Athens, including exterior and internal spaces, using a combination of ground-based and aerial (UAV-mounted) photography under rigorous survey control. The resulting point cloud dataset constitutes the primary survey record of the building in its current state (as-existing). Finally 2D drawings were produced for Taxiarches church using Information from the produced 3D Mesh. In the case of Agioi Anargyroi church a BIM-ready model of the existing structure was proposed as an alternative method for the production of coordinated 2D drawings and facilitating requirements of subsequent development of the project.


In the last years, Structure-from-Motion photogrammetry (SfM) has been used worldwide as a method for 3D documentation of cultural heritage. The use of SfM photogrammetry (along with other technologies such as laser scanning and close-range scanning for the digitization of museum collections is becoming ever more widely practiced, as evidenced by the growing output of 3D digital models of cultural heritage objects in web-based 3D viewing and sharing platforms [4]. A growing range of SfM software applications are currently available to an expanding base of users in the heritage sector, corresponding with significant volume of academic research and publications in the field [1][2][3]. The relatively low starting costs, versatility and high-quality of visual output (textures) makes SfM photogrammetry an attractive solution for 3D recording of complex historic monuments.
This paper looks first at the application of SfM for the digital documentation of Taxiarches church in Ermioni a significant early example of Byzantine ecclesiastical architecture in Greece. In this case the produced Pointcloud and 3D Mesh was used to draw architectural 2d Drawings. Ιδιαίτερη προσοχή δόθηκε to the foundations of an ancient Greek temple that was revealed during a recent repair program under the portico of the church.
Secondly this paper looks at the application of SfM for the digital documentation of the church of Agioi Anargyroi in Athens. In this case we tried to build a ΒΙΜ-ready model based on the produced Pointcloud. Building Information Modelling (BIM) is a technology more widely used in the new-build construction industry. However, in the last five years, the concept of Heritage (or Historic) Building Information Modelling (HBIM) has become of hot topic for research [5][6]. The term ‘BIM-ready’ has been used to describe a 3D model created as an assembly of components in a BIM environment, which represents the geometry of the existing fabric, without incorporating any additional information [7].

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