A 3D replica of Syria’s historic 1,800-year-old Palmyra Arch of Triumph was unveiled at the World Government Summit – held at Dubai’s Madinat Jumeirah on February 12-14, 2017.
The unveiling took place in the presence of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashied Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Duba, His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Maktoum, Deputy Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates, Minister of Presidential Affairs. Their Highnesses were accompanied by Ms Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO, and Mrs Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund.
The replica of the historic Arch of Palmyra, which was destroyed in 2015, is the fruit of the partnership between the Dubai Future Foundation and the Oxford Institute of Digital Archaeology (IDA). The one-of-a-kind strategic initiative harnesses modern technology to preserve the heritage and history of human civilizations everywhere.
With this global partnership, the Dubai Future Foundation seeks to document the details of several archaeological and historic locations in collaboration with UNESCO, Harvard University, Oxford University and many other prestigious educational institutions and non-governmental organizations.
Cutting-edge photography technologies were used to scan and store one million photos of the region’s archaeological relics, in a bid to preserve it for future generations. The project allows governments, international organizations, and experts to accurately reproduce the region’s cultural landmarks using 3D technology.
The 3D Arch of Palmyra was presented for the first time in London, then in New York City, and now in Dubai. It will later be displayed at the G7 Summit in Italy.
Experts and scientists from the Dubai Future Foundation and the Oxford Institute of Digital Archeology developed new technologies – in photography, printing, and 3D sculpting – capable of highly accurate digital scanning.
Moreover, an electronic portal was launched to collect one million 3D images of archaeological sites at risk of destruction and sabotage to be documented. The portal has published more than half a million images so far, and distributed 5,000 digital cameras with 3D features to the initiative’s partners and volunteers, with the support of the Dubai Future Foundation.
The replica of the Palmyra Arch of triumph was built using 3D technology and original images of the monument. The process took place in Italy and used Egyptian marble. The monument weighs approximately 11 tons and stands almost 20 feet tall – this is roughly two-thirds the size of the original monument.