126 year old, Blue whale specimen ‘Hope’ replaced ‘Dippy’ the dinosaur in the Warehouse building’s Hintze hall at London’s Natural History Museum.

A showcase of our scanning and modelling abilities, Natural History Museum’s new specimen, was scanned by ASES in 2017 for the purpose of historic preservation and animation by the NHM.

Equipment

  • Leica TS15 1” totalstation
  • Faro X330 Laser scanner

Duration

  • 2 Weeks

What we did

We were first tasked with scanning the specimen for its true geometry at a secret aircraft hanger in Oxford, this allowed designers to configure exact lifting points and pose for its destination in Hintze Hall.

Once transported to the Natural History Museum in Kensington, London. ASES was responsible for setting out and ensuring the pose was fixed exact to design.

The specimen was supported with temporary cables whilst the final pose was formed, ASES achieved accurate totalstation measurements by placing targets at fixing points, the final cable lengths cut to our measurements and fixed to the roof girders.

With the pose perfected, accurate, high resolution Laser scanning was carried out around Hintze Hall, capturing the complete specimen for mesh to solid modelling in 3D Reshaper. HD imagery was draped over the point cloud to produce a realistic, textured model with stunning results.

Natural History Museum Whale IMG 9938
Natural History Museum Whale 1
Once transported to the Natural History Museum in Kensington, London. ASES was responsible for setting out and ensuring the pose was fixed exact to design.

Challenges

The high detail required, complexity of the specimen and its high position proved challenging for the complete acquisition of scan data.

Advantageous positions around the hall were used to position the Laser scanner in order to collect overhead data, this relied on accurate survey control to ensure registration of scans aligned perfectly.

Photography for rendering the modelled mesh had to captured in the same lighting to ensure even, realistic exposure throughout.

The Project in Pictures

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