Digital visualisation of the Rooswijk

In 2017 and 2018 the Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands (RCE), Historic England and MSDS Marine undertook a high profile excavation on the Rooswijk protected wreck site. The ship's remains lie at a depth of more than 20 metres on the seabed and the site is designated under Section 1 of the Protection of Wrecks Act 1973. Several virtual tools were created to give non-divers the possibility to visit the  Rooswijk site and its objects.

Digital model made on sketchfab of a pillar dollar
Image: ©#Rooswijk1740 project
Digital model of pillar dollar found on Rooswijk (RK17 A00104)

Photogrammetry and virtual tours

With the introduction of software to produce 3D photogrammetry models of just about anything, underwater and maritime archaeology gained a new tool for fast registration of individual objects as well as whole sites. The 3D models can show us what is lying underwater and thereby bring the site to the public.

In the #Rooswijk1740 project, 3D models were made of objects that were found by the archaeologists using photogrammetry and laser scanning. These 3D models can be seen (also in VR) on Sketchfab.

Additionally, a virtual trail was created by UK-contractor MSDS Marine in cooperation with ArtasMedia and  CyanSub. Archival evidence, geophysical surveys, underwater photos and footage and cutting edge computer generated imagery were used. This evidence has been pieced together to bring the site to life and give the public a glimpse of what it is like to dive the wreck. New archaeological finds have been made available in 3D and users can explore a model of the wreck showing where they were found.

Picture of the Rooswijk dive trail
Image: ©#Rooswijk1740 project
The Rooswijk can now be admired in the virtual dive trail