Category Archives: Historical research

All activities related to collection of documents and information for allowing scientifically-based 3D reconstructions

CHT2 Final meeting

A final joint meeting was held  17th January 2018 at USAL of Avila, Spain. Each partner’s commitments were reviewed during this meeting. Examples of 4D products, visualised online through various web-gis platforms, were also presented (  Dissemination activities for exhibition materials were finalised.  Especially for the CHT2 UK case study an exhibition will be performed as part of the Great Exhibition of the North during summer 2018 (


Spanish-Italian meeting in Milan

During October a meeting between the Italian and Spanish partners took place at Politecnico di Milano to share experiences and results regarding the completion of their case studies. Several research lines and transfer of technology were discussed, being the critical issues:
(i) different alternatives of image-based modeling and multi-data fusion procedures;
(ii) mesh simplification and optimization to improve the results exportation, either for visualization or analysis purposes, as the stability of the CH asset;
(iii) reverse modeling techniques to give an added value to the final diachronic 3D models, taking into account object’s complexity and non-parametric modeling limitations;
(iv) the current state of advancement of the project deliverables.

New publication available in Geosciences

The Italian partner has published findings on the Milan Roman Circus reconstruction in a special issue of Geosciences journal on “Remote sensing and geosciences for archaeology”. Entitled “Accurate Reconstruction of the Roman Circus in Milan by Georeferencing Heterogeneous Data Sources with GIS”, the paper can be viewed directly in Geosciences.

New funding for CHT2 UK case study

Newcastle University has been successful in securing additional funding to continue the CHT2 UK case study on Hadrian’s Wall. Approximately £75k of funding has been secured from the UK’s Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) Iapetus Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP) in partnership with English Heritage and Historic England. The PhD, entitled “Assessing and predicting natural environmental impacts on cultural heritage landscapes: a case study on Hadrian’s Wall” will commence in September 2017 and run for 3.5 years. The new research programme will overlap with the closing stages of the current JPI-CH project, funded in the UK by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), building on the legacy of CHT2. The overall aim of the new programme is to assess the vulnerability of tangible cultural heritage to natural hazards under a changing climate regime, demonstrating this on an iconic monument of international renown.

Third CHT2 Meeting

The CHT2 project has met today in Nafplio (Greece), in the framework of the 3DARC conference (, for a midterm update about the various activities at M18.

The whole Description Of Work (DOW) of the project was reviewed and discussed by all the partners, defining strategies for respecting the various commitments despite the administrative difficulties met, not depending on the partners will.

The actual individual at the meeting were: Jon Mills from Newcastle University (NCL); Diego Gonzàles Aguilera and Pablo Rodríguez Gonzálvez from University of Salamanca (USAL); Slawomir Mikrut form Scientific Stanisław Staszic Association (SSSA); Gabriele Guidi and Sara Gonizzi Barsanti from Politecnico di Milano (POLIMI).

Archaeological remains of the circus on the modern topography of Milan

In the frame of the WP3, the Politecnico di Milano unit worked capillarly, in connection with the inspectors of the Superintendence of Milan,  on the collection of all the street numbers of the actual buildings in which basements are still visible the remains. Starting from the analysis of the circus plan provided by the work of De Capitani D’Arzago, it was started a work of the identification of the accurate position of all the documented remains.

Analysing all the material stored in the Archives of the Superintendence, all the restrictions of the cadastral units interested by archaeological findings were specified but, given the period in which these restrictions were defined, most of them are brief and unclear. Hence, it took a long search and archival investigation to identify the single structures, their position and their extension.vincoli

Map of the arcaheological remains regarding the roman circus of Milan

Collection of archival images of the Circus of Milan

In the frame of the WP3 of the CHT2 project, the Politecnico di Milano unit proceed on  the inventory and the selection of all the photographs stored in the Archives of the Superintendence in Milan, for the 4D reconstruction of the roman Circus of Milan.

During the excavation occurred along with the reconstruction of the city after the end of the WWII, the archaeological documentation regarded written texts, drawing and pictures, taken from different points of view or in different phases during the excavation.  This selection regards artefacts visible during construction projects (e.g. the metro, new
skyscrapers) or inspections of the superintendent.

This material has a valuable importance for the 4D reconstruction of the roman circus, because permits to obtain information on archaeological remains that now are no longer visible.a012828

Example of one pictures collected, regarding the excavation of the area and the finding of the archaeological remains.

Second CHT2 Meeting

The CHT2 project has met today in Prague, in the framework of the ISPRS world conference (, for a semestral update about the various activities.
WP2 has been concluded with the production of a methodology that covers all the 4D cases considered in the framework of this project. Either the analysis on time-varying data collected by 3D technologies (e.g. photogrammetry, laser scanning) or data collected by historical documents are considered.

The work is now proceeding with its operating activities about data collection on the 4 different historical sites considered: The walls of Avila (Spain), The Cracow fortress (Poland), The Adrian Wall (UK) and the Roman circus of Milan (Italy).

The actual individual at the meeting were: Jon Mills and Karolina Fieber from Newcastle University (NCL); Diego Gonzàles Aguilera and Pablo Rodríguez Gonzálvez from University of Salamanca (USAL); Beata Hejmanowska form Scientific Stanisław Staszic Association (SSSA); Gabriele Guidi and Sara Gonizzi Barsanti from Politecnico di Milano (POLIMI).

Digging into archives for reconstructing the Roman Circus of Milan

In the framework of WP3, the Politecnico di Milano unit collected several historical texts, old maps, drawings and images concerning the Roman Circus, located on the south-west area of the modern city and revealing a stratigraphy that goes from the early roman period to modern times.

Useful pieces of information were acquired regarding the previous studies of the archaeological remains and the excavations that allowed revealing the ruins of the structure.  The bibliographic research focused on different publication about the study of the ancient topography of the roman city and the analysis of all the material information about the circus. All the drawings of the archaeological campaigns were collected with all the written documentation (where available). After the WWII, the reconstruction of the city started and in this phase, during the excavations, many archaeological remains were found and sometimes used as foundations for the new buildings.

Another field of interest was the investigation of all the publication regarding circuses built in the same period of the one in Milan in other countries in order to collect as much details as possible to reconstruct the circus, since the archaeological remains of this circus are few and hidden. The bibliographic research considered also an overview analysis of the topography of the surrounding (the imperial palace and the ancient domus) in order to better understand the location of the buildings and to analyse in deepen the techniques used for constructing the circus.

Finally, about 60 city maps, representing various historical periods from the Renaissance to the present days, were collected from the Civica Raccolta delle Stampe Achille Bertarelli, and the analysed for the investigation of the changing of the city during the last centuries.


Milan perspective map – 1573 Antoine du Pérac Lafrery