Carola Hein, Professor of History of Architecture and Urban Planning at Delft University of Technology https://www.tudelft.nl/en/architecture-and-the-built-environment/about-the-faculty/professors/profdring-cm-hein/,
Joris Dik, Professor in Materials Science and Engineering at Delft University of Technology
are available to discuss how technologies such as 3D scanning and printing can help with the restoration of Notre Dame.
Technologies such as 3D scanning and printing could help in reconstructing the Notre Dame Cathedral. Carola Hein, Professor of History of Architecture and Urban Planning at Delft University of Technology, has worked on the workflow from 3D scan to 3D printing, taking into account steps such as documentation and archiving, design and fabrication and outreach. She states that 3D scanning can be of great help to document exactly how Notre Dame is constructed. The level of detail that is available on the scans will determine the degree to which they can be used as a foundation for reconstruction and 3D printing. Fundamental choices need to be made whether to stick to the original structures and materials, to deviate from them, or to add new design elements. Parts of the cathedral can be 3D-printed, to accompany the rebuilding process, facilitate discussion among professionals and promote dissemination to the broader public.
Joris Dik, who has done extensive work in examining works of art without damaging them, adds that even large structures can be 3D printed in materials such as steel or concrete. He states that reproducing for instance a famous painting that is destroyed would take away its value, but buildings can gain ‘a new soul’ after new materials have been added. He points to the Frauenkirche in Germany, that was destroyed during the second World War and was only rebuilt years later, with new materials.
Additive Manufacturing (commonly known as 3D printing) technology has become a global phenomenon. In the domain of heritage, 3D printing can be seen as a time and cost-efficient method for restoring vulnerable architectural structures. The technology can also provide an opportunity to reproduce missing or destroyed cultural heritage or to express lost appearances, in the cases of conflicts or environmental threats. Researchers in the project ‘Re-printing architectural heritage’ have conducted an experimental project at the Hippolytuskerk in the Dutch village of Middelstum to investigate and to discuss the potential of reprinting historical spaces as a copy. They tested available technologies to reproduce a mural on a section of one of the church’s vault with maximum possible fidelity to material, colours and local microstructures. Simultaneously, a second project was conducted at the famous Mauritshuis at The Hague, where a section of one of the rooms was reconstructed by means of 3D printing.