Mapping and analysing St. Peter's Basilica with digital technologies in order to make it the object of constant future monitoring: this is a project that makes use of Italferr's digital know-how, resulting in the creation of a digital twin of the Vatican Basilica. The study, conducted on behalf of the Fabbrica di San Pietro institution took its very first steps in July and August of 2022, during the hours when the Basilica was closed to the public, with the first surveys necessary to collect more than 3.1 terabytes of data.
The measurement phase required 2 months of surveys, including indoor and outdoor, with drones and balloons, 15 thousand photos for 630 Giga pixels acquired, 2 weeks of post processing of point clouds with several PCs working in parallel, and an additional 2 months of activities for the development of the BIM information model and of the Digital Twin. These are the numbers of the start-up of a complex project in which high technology and digitisation harmonise with the art, faith and culture cherished by the Vatican Basilica.
To date, the entire collection of data has already been handed over to the Fabbrica di San Pietro. Within the Basilica's Digital Twin will flow data from the sensors defined in the monitoring project. The resulting database will be made available to the Fabbrica di San Pietro for future maintenance activities serving the Basilica. Through specific computational algorithms, it will thus be possible to investigate the responsiveness of the building complex to static and dynamic stresses, have full awareness of the health of the structures and proceed to the design of a permanent structural monitoring system. The possible future applications are many.
To support the project, Italferr has partnered with highly qualified companies such as Italdron Air Service Srl, supported by CAD Connect, for field survey activities, and Sacertis Ingegneria s.r.l for the design of the monitoring system. The project will be illustrated to the public as soon as the first phase of processing the collected data is completed.