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3D Printing and History

If every history class had a massive library of downloadable and printable 3D files you would have students lining up to sign up for the class. The entire idea is way more exciting than reading chapter after chapter in a textbook, with many students losing focus and not comprehending what they have read. Being able to relate to an object in history goes a long way in making that history lesson much more interesting.

Also considering the fact that almost every historic artifact is behind an exhibition glass probably in a museum somewhere not to be touched. With the availability of high-end 3D printers and scanners, replicas can be touched, and many of these replicas are virtually indistinguishable from their real counterparts.

Students can build their own replicas of the Roman Coliseum, ancient aqueducts, and Liberty Bell using 3D modeling applications. Details such as arches, windows, and columns can be easily made on a computer and printed with extraordinary detail to give them an idea of scale and design during ancient times.

A variety of arches, boxes, triangles, and other shapes can be 3D printed and assembled, providing additional insight into the geometry behind each piece. In some cases, students can also learn about the mechanics of 3D printing, working with their teacher to troubleshoot and problem solving. It helps fuel motivation, allowing them to choose their own piece of history that appealed to them. Combining computer skills, 3D modeling education, and 3D printing, teachers will be able to inject excitement into the history of western civilization

The Smithsonian, which has 137 million exhibits in 19 museums, is using a hi-tech scanner to capture its most famous exhibits in high resolution. Once it has captured the item, it will then use an advanced 3D printer to painstakingly recreate the exhibit layer by layer.

The United Arab Emirates’ Dubai Museum of Future Foundation is collaborating with UNESCO and the Institute for Digital Archaeology in order to recreate destroyed or defaced historical areas within the Middle East Using 3D imaging technology. They will create detailed replicas of different historical regions, which will then be collected in a database full of historical archaeological sites from all over the Middle East. This project demonstrates that, though historical artifacts and monuments may themselves be physically destroyed, the important context they behold can now be infinitely preserved with a database of 3D models. By the end of 2015, the Dubai Museum of the Future Foundation plans to collect over one million digital images of these various archaeological sites and monuments, piecing them together into realistic, historically accurate 3D models.

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