Castle mapped out in 3D scan

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Carrick Castle has been reproduced three dimensionally as part of a project commissioned by the Northern Ireland Environment Agency.

The medieval landmark was originally surveyed three years ago with a 3D laser scanner in order to look at the castle’s structure in greater detail. Further scanning work was carried out to coincide with the recent archaeological digs at the site.

A Department of the Environment spokesperson said: “In 2011 NIEA commissioned the Centre for Archaeological Fieldwork in the School of Geography, Archaeology and Palaeoecology at Queen’s University Belfast to survey Carrickfergus Castle with a 3D laser scanner. This ‘state of the art’ 3D laser technology can make up to one million measurements per second. In total, 265 individual 3D laser scans were collected on both the inside and the outside of the castle, with every floor, wall, ceiling and roof surveyed in extremely high detail. Once accurately joined together, these scans produced an unparalleled 3D data set. Further scans were made to capture the new information uncovered by the recent archaeological excavations.”

The scans can be used to create plans, cross sections, measure wall thickness or individual building stones anywhere on the structure, giving new insight into how the castle was constructed. “This information will aid in the drawing up and design of conservation solutions such as the new roof and stopping water ingress at the barrel-vaulted stores,” the spokesperson added. “We have no plans at present to commission any further 3D scans at the castle.”

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