· 3D Imaging of Sensitive Objects 3D Imaging of Sensitive Objects


We support museums, research institutions and companies in the planning, implementation and post-processing of 3D images for cultural assets.

3D Models for the Reproduction of six Historic Bassoons

We are currently working on 3D imaging of six historic bassoons for the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis (University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland). The project includes the implementation of high-resolution CT scans, post-processing of the data to make the models printable, and 3D printing of the metal keys from brass.


Reproduction of a 15th century bone flute

We produced a playable replica of a 15th century bone flute for the Musikinstrumentensammlung Willisau, Switzerland. The flute block is not preserved, therefore the original instrument does not produce sound. In the course of our work we performed a high resolution X-ray computed tomography, designed a variety of new blocks as CAD models, tested them with a fluid dynamic simulation, and printed a playable replication.

The slides for a lecture on the subject that we recently gave at the Cité de la musique in Paris can be found here.

X-Ray µCT Scan of a Guadagnini Viol


Scans of instruments like violins and viols can be represented as high-quality images. A spatial resolution of 100 µm voxel size allows for the examination of all structural elements. Even minuscule details, like tool marks, vestiges of prior repairs, and micro cracks can be rendered visible. Thickness measurements can be performed with high precision. The cross sections of the soundboard can be used for dendrochronological dating. By extracting the surface, the data set can be used for the replication of all individual parts of the instrument using 3D-printing or CNC-milling with an accuracy of max. 0.1 mm deviation. Even wood density can be determined for all parts.


In the volume rendering of the soundboard a horizontal reinforcement of the bass bar is clearly visible. The cross section at this position shows that it caused a flat deformation of the arching. It might be considered to remove this part in order to correct the arching. The other reinforcements and the soundpost patch in the back can be examined as well.


FEM physical model of a Philippine gong


One gong of a Philippine Kulintang gong chime. The geometric model based on a 3D surface scan is utilized for finite element method (FEM) physical modelling. Modal deflection shapes ([0,1], [1,1] and [2,1]) obtained from an eigenvalue analysis with free-free boundary conditions. The original instrument is situated at the University of Hamburg, Germany

Drawing Drawing Drawing
[0,1] 438 Hz [1,1] 752 Hz [2,1] 1557 Hz

Surface scan of a Kulepa Ganeg


Kulepa Ganeg (Launut/Nunut), a friction idiophone from Papua New Guinea. High resolution model based on a 3D surface scan. The original instrument is on display at Übersee-Museum Bremen, Germany.