3D digitization of historical maps

Vassilios Tsioukas, Miltiades Daniil
2009 unpublished
Most of the modern maps around the world lie on paper subject or other flat but flexible material. Although, most of the historic maps in maplibraries' collections and museums are representations of the real world on paper there are still cases of a. anaglyph maps (3D maps), b. deformed maps (i.e. maps on books, atlases) that used to be flat originally and c. maps on wood, fabric, and other non flat material. All of the previous map representations certainly need to be digitized in the best
more » ... zed in the best possible and accurate method, for archiving purposes, to provide their facsimile hardcopies and/or for cartographic knowledge dissemination purposes. One way to provide the 3D model of the map's relief is by using conventional photogrammetric or scanning techniques (structure light or laser light scanning). In that way a 3D photorealistic object model can be acquired to give a "reading" accuracy and understanding of the map with an error smaller than the one the human eye can perceive. Another aspect for the necessity of the creation of the 3D model of the map is the production of the unwrapped version of the relief/deformed map. Most of the deformed historic maps were not undulated originally. Time and bad archiving conditions lead to their current deformation and through the digitization procedure an unwrapping process could be applied to provide a softcopy (and through printing a hardcopy also) of the original. In this paper a system and its accompanying software applications are presented that will help the creation of the 3D digital copies of deformed/anaglyph maps.