A Portable Photogrammetry Rig for the Reliable Creation of High-Quality 3D Artifact Models in the Field

Author(s): Samantha Porter

Year: 2015


3D modeling is becoming an increasingly utilized tool in archaeology. Currently, there are three principal ways of obtaining 3D models of objects: laser scanning, white light scanning, and photogrammetry. Photogrammetry is becoming increasingly popular since it is relatively inexpensive, mobile, and requires less equipment that has the possibility of malfunctioning. This poster presents a photogrammetry rig consisting of materials that can be obtained easily in the US. These include a kitchen turntable (lazy susan), 12" x 12" interlocking foam tiles, laminated mm paper to act as a scale, a black velvet background, and a camera and tripod. In addition, the use of rechargeable battery-powered LED lights means the rig can even be used in areas without direct access to electricity. Tips on taking photos (camera settings, etc.) are provided, along with explanations of ways to streamline and optimize photo and model processing using software including Adobe Photoshop / Gimp, Agisoft PhotoScan, and Meshlab / Geomagic. Limitations of this system, such as object size and raw material, are also discussed in the context of alternative scanning-based systems. Although this system may be used on a wide variety of artifact types, here particular emphasis is given to the modeling of lithic artifacts.

Cite this Record

A Portable Photogrammetry Rig for the Reliable Creation of High-Quality 3D Artifact Models in the Field. Samantha Porter. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 397628) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8FF3TX2

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min long: -11.074; min lat: 37.44 ; max long: 50.098; max lat: 70.845 ;

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