Monday, February 08, 2010

In the lab: Laser scanning the Sphinx


The Sphinx has always been an object of fascination for people for thousands of years. Today, new technology allows us to study it in more detail than ever. We recently cooperated with a team from the Mubarak Scientific City using laser technology to scan the entire Sphinx from nose to tail. The laser scanning was even able to make a detailed record of the face of the Sphinx. We then used the information gathered by the scanning and create the most accurate 3D model of the Sphinx ever. This model can be used to measure the effects of humans and nature on the Sphinx, which is very important for our conservation efforts. It is the best scientific record of the Sphinx I have ever seen!

In recent years, the rising water table has begun to pose a threat to many monuments and sites in Egypt, including Giza, so holes have been drilled under the Great Sphinx of Giza in order to test the groundwater levels and assess the risk. Click here to watch the video in which Dr Zahi Hawass and Mark Lehner talk about the conservation effort and how to keep the Sphinx' paws dry.

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