TSU and the Hermitage are digitizing the Valley of the Kings

13 June 2018

TSU Rector Eduard Galazhinsky and Mikhail Piotrovsky, General Director of the State Hermitage Museum, have signed an agreement on collaboration. The organizations are planning joint archaeological research using computer technologies. They have already been implementing projects to digitize cultural heritage sites.

The Southern-Siberian Archaeological Expedition of the State Hermitage under the leadership of Konstantin Chugunov and the TSU Laboratory of Interdisciplinary Archeological Studies “Artifact” under the direction of Olga Zaitseva have been conducting joint research in the Republic of Tuva for two years. During this time, aerial photography work was carried out of Scythian burial grounds in the Turan-Uyuk Basin, known as the Valley of the Kings. Scientists have shot an area of more than 20 sq. kilometers.

- The further joint research will help develop landscape archeology. It allows us to explore the fundamental problem of interaction between nature and society and to see how a unique cultural landscape was formed in the Turan-Uyuk Basin, characterized by a very high concentration of burial-memorial complexes, - says Olga Zaitseva. - With the Hermitage, we will work to create a 3D geoinformation system of Valley of the Kings and 3D models of artifacts from the previously studied and now-investigated cemeteries - weapons, jewelry in animal style, and horse equipment.

With the help of world-class equipment, TSU archaeologists will create a 3D model of the entire valley, individual burial mounds, and burials. In addition to their scientific value, the results obtained will be in demand in modern museum practices. For example, 3D models and digital archives can be the basis for interactive multimedia exhibitions and virtual museums. They can be included in projects that use augmented reality technology and additive technologies. This will allow all who want to visit the Valley of the Kings to do it without leaving home.