The Kensington Runestone

Scanned with Artec Eva and Space Spider. Eva was used to scan the entire stone, resulting in a superb digital replica, while Space Spider scanned the runes themselves, for a deeper view of the engraving marks and the surrounding stone, after which all scans were combined into one final model.

Scanning time: 
<1 hour
Processing time: 
1 hour for initial color results; 4 hours for final, maximum-resolution results

All scans were completed in under one hour. Post-processing time: 1 hour for initial color results, 4 hours for final, maximum-resolution results. This extra time taken was to ensure that the 3D model is a seamless, magnificent digital copy of the Kensington Runestone.

In the words of Laser Design’s 3D scanning expert Kevin Shain, here’s how the post processing was done: “First I duplicated all the raw data in the workspace. Having only one day with the Runestone, I needed to work fast and accurately, but also have a backup plan in case something went wrong and I needed to go back a few steps.”

“Next, I processed the Eva data to achieve the ‘macro view’ of the Runestone. I had scanned the Runestone face up for the first step, then carefully turned it over to scan the underside. Before I did anything else, I ran global registration on each side to make sure everything was fine before alignment. Just to be safe, I had put color markings around the Runestone before scanning, so I didn’t select automatic base removal.”

“The markings were helpful, because blurry colors are a sure sign of misalignments. But the color was sharp and crisp, so I was confident in the registration. One could say the texture on the table ‘sparked joy’ for the processing, and so I thanked it for its service and then deleted it, using the base removal tool.”

“After deleting the table, I aligned top and bottom Eva datasets together. Alignment went perfectly, so I ran a final global registration on both sides together, followed by a mild outlier removal process, finishing up with a sharp fusion. Then I simplified that data and texturized it to create the first color 3D model of the Runestone. The next step was to combine this data with the super high resolution Space Spider data.”

“For the Space Spider portion, I ran global registration on each of the Space Spider scan data sets to confirm everything was fine with no misalignments. To make things easier, I used the existing EVA model as the registered dataset in the Align tool to bring each of my Space Spider scans to the position of the EVA data. It worked perfectly!”

“The Space Spider and EVA data completely matched. I ran the last global registration on everything, followed by an outlier removal, and finally sharp fusion. The result was a complete, high resolution 3D model of the Kensington Runestone.”