GLOBALink | Digital tech plays role in protecting Gansu Great Wall

Authorities in northwest China's Gansu Province recently completed the building of a three-dimensional database to digitally map the Great Wall in order to ensure better protection.

The database contains all the information collected through unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) field scans and air remote sensing technology and generates millimeter-level high-precision 3D images of several sections of the Great Wall in Shandan County in Zhangye City, according to Bai Yuzhang, a staff member of the Shandan cultural relic protection bureau.

The Great Wall sections in Gansu stretch 3,654 km. Over the past few years, the Gansu provincial cultural heritage bureau has implemented over 30 protection projects, utilizing digital technology as a new approach.

The Shandan section of the Great Wall stretches over 200 km, which was mostly built from the Han Dynasty (202 BC-220 AD) to the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and is considered well-preserved. The existing sections in Xiakou Village are the main components.

The technical team used UAV photography and remote sensing mapping technologies to take photos of the Great Wall and the surroundings, covering an area of about 25 square km, and generated panoramic 3D models based on data analysis.

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