The VENUS project aims to provide a virtual exploration of deep underwater archaeological sites. Virtual exploration of our underwater environment will permit both experts and the general public to study interesting archaeological sites in a safe, cost-effective and pedagogical environment.
Precious underwater archaeological sites, for example shipwrecks, are continuously jeopardized by activities such as trawling that destroy the crucial surface layer of the site. The generation of a thorough and exhaustive 3D record of these wrecks consequently gains importance daily. These sites can never be experienced first hand by the majority of archaeologists or the general public: our project will provide a faithful accurate 3D immersive reconstruction of the site providing virtual access to all.
Our project is composed of five objectives:
Initially we will define a series of best practices and procedures for collecting and storing data in an efficient, economic and safe way from the underwater archaeological site.
Our second objective will be to survey wrecks, even deep, using AUVs / ROVs (Autonomous Underwater /Remotely Operated Vehicles) and various techniques of data acquisition (sonar + photogrammetry).
We will then provide archaeologists with software tools for signal, data and information processing and management. The generation of these tools is our third objective and will allow the extraction of digital models and management of confidence levels of the data collected from objective two.
Our fourth objective is to generate virtual reality and augmented reality tools for the immersive interaction and visualization of the models created in objective three. These tools will provide archaeologists with an improved insight into the data and the general public with simulated dives to the site.
Finally we will disseminate our results via a dedicated website and publications within the field of archaeology, sea exploration, photogrammetry and virtual reality.
Funding SchemeSTREP - Specific Targeted Research Project
13009 Marseille 9E
75001 Paris Cedex 01