Virtual Vianden Box

As a contribution to the European monument year 2018, ArcTron 3D was able to develop the Virtual Vianden Box (ViViBox for short) on behalf of the Luxembourg Ministry of Culture and the “Service des sites et monuments nationaux” (SSMN).

It is an innovative digital exhibition platform. Inside the box visitors can experience the famous medieval castle of Vianden in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg in a whole new way – in computer-generated “augmented reality” (AR), but also in a completely immersive, spectacular “virtual world” (VR).

The ViViBox “travels” through various exhibition locations in Luxembourg in 2018 and can also be seen at the end of the European monument year at the leading European trade fair denkmal/mutec (08.-10.11.2018) in Leipzig.

With this developement, ArcTron 3D follows the AR concept “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD), in which visitors use the ViViBox Augmented Reality APPon their own smartphone or tablet to gain access to the AR content (e.g. three-dimensional phases and interior models) distributed over three stations and further information about the castle (e.g. texts, graphics and videos in three languages).

With two high-quality virtual reality stations (Oculus Rift), the visitor is then completely immersed in “Virtual Vianden”. The user experiences spectacular tours through the castle, in which he can also take “dizzying” airy positions or take unique “time journeys” through the development of the castle. Something like this can only be conveyed in “virtual reality”. For VR “novices” there is a completely guided tour with limited interaction – for experienced VR “gamers” there is an “extended” interactive variant, in which different further activities are possible with two hand-held controllers.

Vianden Castle is shown and didactically explained in three dimensions, both inside and out. The AR and VR also show the historical development of the castle in 10 phases from Roman late antiquity to today’s museum visitor castle. This data is based on many years of building research by the SSMN, which was converted into corresponding, scientifically sound 3D models by the German heritage conservation specialists at ArcTron 3D GmbH in Regensburg.

ArcTron has been working for more than 10 years on the 3D digitization of Vianden Castle using state-of-the-art surveying technologies. In addition to airborne laser scanning from helicopters and ultralight aircraft, ultra-modern flying camera drones were also used. On the ground, 3D laser scanners and high-resolution photogrammetry were used for detailed 3D images of all the walls, facades and interiors of Vianden Castle. Vianden Castle is thus one of the most elaborately digitally and 3D documented castles in the world. These works can now be studied more closely in the ViViBox using AR and VR technologies.

In the sense of the tourism promotion the ViViBox should stimulate the users to convert his experience of the digital world and travel to Vianden to visit the castle also in real life.

By the way, you can also employ the AR content without visiting the ViViBox. Download the APP, download and print the “Target Images” and “off you go”: experience Vianden Castle in Augmented Reality:

Further information about the project: