Presentation of 3D models of Cerrillo Blanco, Porcuna, Jaen at a Press conference

Arturo Ruiz. in an interview for a radio channel (Photo: José A. Tuñón).

Arturo Ruiz. in an interview for a radio channel (Photo: José A. Tuñón).

A press conference was held on July 11, 2013 by the University of Jaén  to present their first results and their plans for digitising in 3D a series of sites and archaeological remains important to the Iberian culture as part of the 3D ICONS project.

The Andalusian Centre for Iberian Archaeology (University of Jaén) has completed the digitisation of a group of Cerrillo Blanco sculptures from Porcuna on display at the Provincial Museum of Jaen. This group is the first of around 500 3D models of sites and archaeological material relating to the culture of the Iberians which the team plans to digitise as part of 3D ICONS including sites such as the oppidum at Puente Tablas  amongst others.

The Porcuna group is the most important collection of sculptures ascribed to the Iberian culture found in Spain and it is key to understanding the origin of the Iberian aristocracy. The sculptures dates from the Fifth century B.C. and includes figures of warriors, ancestors, animals as well as religious scenes .

Cerrillo Blanco sculptures, group of warriors (Photo. Ricardo Olmos).

Cerrillo Blanco sculptures, group of warriors (Photo. Ricardo Olmos).

In this first phase, the team focussed on the 40 sculptures on display in the Provincial Museum. Alberto Sánchez Vizcaíno, research coordinator of the project, explained at the press conference that a 3D laser scanner was used for digitisation and that each sculpture involved about 6 hours of work generating a three-dimensional model of each sculpture.  Completing the group has taken two and a half months.  "We hope to continue now with the rest of the fragments, now in the collections of the Museum of Jaén" Alberto Sánchez Vizcaíno says.

The laser scanner was chosen for the digitisation because of the physical characteristics and locations of the sculptures - most are around a metre tall and this combined with their weight, the impossibility of moving them and the lighting conditions were all factors taken into account. The team also needed to deal with problems arising from the presence of supports and the bases used to exhibit the sculptures.

The technical characteristics of the 3D Handheld Laser Scanner are set out below:

Measurement Rate 25.000 measures/s
Laser class Class II
Accuracy XY 40 microns
Resolution 0,050 mm XYZ (XYZ 0,0019)
Volumetric accuracy 20 μm + 0,1 L/1000
Depth of field 30 cm
Output formats DAE, .FBX, .MA, .OBJ, .PLY, .STL,
.TXT, .WRL, .X3D, .X3DZ, .ZPR
3D model. Warrior with double armour. (UJA-CAAI-Museum of Jaén)

3D model. Warrior with double armour. (UJA-CAAI-Museum of Jaén)

These 3D models with photographic materials, videos and background information will be made available to the general public via Europeana . "The ultimate goal is that all these materials are publicly available and that anyone, from home, to enter into Europeana and use them," said Arturo Ruiz, the project's principal investigator and director of the Research Institute, while thanking the Provincial Museum of Jaen for the facilities given to them to work with the Porcuna sculptures.

Creating 3D models of the sculptures and fragments also offers the potential to help to develop proposals for reconstruction and for enabling fragments to be virtually reintegrated into the sculpture they originally came from. This is the case in one of the models presented at the press conference - the 'Warrior Armor' or 'Guerrero # 1 of Porcuna', where a plume has been incorporated into  the helmet. 

Arturo Ruiz, , said " It will be a matter of seeing, in the next few months working on the Museum's collections, which other fragments can be retrieved and added to the 3D models".

Press conference

Ana Martínez showing a 3D model (Photo: José A. Tuñón).

Ana Martínez showing a 3D model (Photo: José A. Tuñón).

These results were presented to the media on July 11 by the university's 3D ICONS team Arturo Ruiz, Alberto Sánchez, Ana Martinez and Francisco Gomez.  The models were demonstrated - the presentation was very well received and favourably commented on by the media in later reports.

Arturo Ruiz gave a short live radio interview and local TV channels also broadcasted short reports about the project.

Some of the media coverage is available online at: