- The Laboratory
The Institute is establishing a Laboratory in order to aid in the research of the Center for Scientific Studies on Cultural Heritage and the Department of History of Science and Technology in Pre-Modern China. The Lab applies new methods of scientific examination, digital simulation and simulation experiments to support the research fields of traditional arts and crafts, scientific archaeology and cultural heritage. In the last two years, it has already been equipped with three types of facilities:
- Information collecting facilities, including a 3D color laser scanner, portable X-ray fluorescence (XRF)analyzer, digital microscope, total station and GNSS/GPS system, and portable spectrophotometer. The portable XRF analyzer allows for non-destructive analysis of cultural relics with no need to sample or contact them, and quickly obtains the chemical compositions of metallic and in organic elements on their surface. The total station and GNSS/GPS system can be used to measure ancient sites or large/medium-sized cultural relics, obtaining a wide range of data, such as the terrain and contour of the sites, the angle, area, perimeter and the relative position of the excavation pits, and the size, height and relative position of large/medium-sized cultural relics;
- A digital simulation system, comprising digital simulation software and non-linear editing software. The digital simulation software can virtually design and verify cultural relics, as well as create 3D models and scenes to achieve virtual display. ADAMS (Automatic Dynamic Analysis of Mechanical Systems) can be used for analysis and simulation of the dynamics of mechanical systems. Solid works can be used for 3D design and quickly generate entire engineering drawings conformed to actual products.3Ds max has the functions of 3D animation rendering and video production. Photoshop is for flat image scanning, editing, image making, advertising, and image input and output, etc. The non-linear editing system can be used to edit and rearrange audio and video data, which contributes to the production of 3D animation;
- Physical verification facilities, including a 3D printer, CNC wood engraving machine and mini-multifunctional metal processing machine tool. The 3D printer can quickly output the entity from its 3D digital models, which shortens the time required for simulation experiments on relevant cultural relics, and provides a visual display effect. The CNC wood engraving machine can hollow out and carve in wood, plastic, PVC, organic glass and other materials, and is especially suitable for engraving acrylic and processing relief, etc.
In 2013, the Lab purchased further facilities, such as a metallographic microscope, relevant sample preparation equipment, and a mineral spectrometer, which are expected to be installed and fine-tuned in November and December this year.