Today the European Commission and Europa Nostra announced the winner of the 2018 EU Prize for Cultural Heritage/Europa Nostra Awards. Twenty-nine award winners from 17 countries are honored for their outstanding achievements in the fields of heritage conservation, research, volunteering, education, training and raising awareness. The CultLab3D was the highlight in the research category: Automated scanning technology for 3D digitization by the Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics Research IGD. As a contribution to the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018, the awards this year emphasize a strong European dimension of the selected achievements.
The winners will present their projects at the Excellence Fair on June 21 at the Allianz Forum. They will also take part in various other events of the "Sharing Heritage – Sharing Values" European Heritage Summit in Berlin from June 18th through 24th. The Heritage Summit is jointly organized by Europa Nostra, the German National Committee for Monument Preservation (DNK) and the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation (SPK). The Summit aims to promote an ambitious European agenda and a heritage action plan as a lasting legacy of the European Heritage Year. The winners in Berlin will accept their prizes on June 22nd.
Citizens worldwide can now vote online for the Public Choice Award, an opportunity to support one of the award-winning projects from their home country or another European country.
CultLab3D: automated scanning technology for 3D digitization
CultLab3D is the world's first scanning system for the 3D mass digitization of artifacts. The developed technology makes it possible to shorten the digitization time to just a few minutes per object compared to the several hours required with conventional 3D scanning methods. The research project was initiated by the Department for the Digitization of Cultural Heritage at the Fraunhofer IGD and funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy with the support of strategic investment funds of the Fraunhofer Society. Fraunhofer IGD was also the technical coordinator of the EU project 3D-COFORM.
With its cost-effective approach to digitally preserving artifacts on a large scale, the CultLab3D project makes a significant contribution to the European digital agenda. It is in line with the call of the European Commission to strengthen cultural institutions in their efforts to make historical collections accessible online and to promote their digital preservation.
The jury praised the project for its technology, which in the future will enable the virtual provision of collections, especially against the backdrop of the recent destruction of heritage sites at an unprecedented scale. Also praised was the improved access to objects that are not always available due to restoration or limited accessibility of collections.