Special Issue "Virtual Reconstruction and Visualization: Serving Geoheritage, Geotourism and Resilience to Geohazards"

A special issue of Applied Sciences (ISSN 2076-3417). This special issue belongs to the section "Earth Sciences and Geography".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2021) | Viewed by 2692

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Paraskevi Nomikou
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Geology and Geoenvironment, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, 15784 Athens, Greece
Interests: seafloor mapping; tectonics; submarine volcanism; 3D reconstruction; physical geography; morpho-geodynamics
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Dr. Karantzalos Konstantinos
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Remote Sensing Laboratory, National Technical University of Athens, 9 Iroon Polytechneiou Str., Zographou, 15780 Athens, Greece
Interests: earth observation and remote sensing; geospatial big data and analytics; computer vision and machine learning; environmental monitoring and precision agriculture
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Prof. Kalliopi Baika
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of History of Art and Archaeology, Aix Marseille Université, CNRS, Centre Camille Jullian, Aix-en-Provence, France
Interests: harbour and coastal archaeology and geoarchaeology; ancient naval harbour infrastructure; underwater archaeology; coastal geoheritage
Dr. Hans-Balder Havenith
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Geology Department, Liege University, 4000 Liege, Belgium
Interests: coupled geohazards; seismic hazard assessment; seismic microzonation; giant mass movements; loess landslides; landslide susceptibility; mining hazards; dams; landslide impacts in lake and sea shore environments; geophysics; numerical modeling; virtual reality
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Dr. Lazaros Grammatikopoulos
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Surveying and Geoinformatics Engineering, University of West Attica, 12243 Egaleo, Greece
Interests: close-range photogrammetry; UAV and mobile mapping; 3D modeling and processing; texture mapping; laser scanning

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Geological surveys have always been highly dependent on accessibility to the areas of interest. For instance, until recently, submarine geosites could only be accessed through conventional ways, such as diving or snorkeling, or costly oceanographic surveys. However, visualization and understanding of geological processes (seismotectonic and/or volcanic processes) in time and space may not only attract touristic interest but also contribute to the mitigation of geohazards. Dynamically advancing fields of informatics, such as virtual/augmented reality (VR/AR) coupled with remotely sensed surveys by unmanned vehicles, are innovative approaches that strongly enhance spatial 3D perception and allow us to map areas of difficult/impossible access at extremely high detail through dynamic models that account for spatial and temporal components. This combined methodology is currently emerging. Several improvements and tests are possible, and very little is known about the immersive perception of time. Thus, this Special Issue is focused on the current technological developments in VR and AR with photogrammetry and oceanography to highlight the terrestrial and underwater wealth, developing a novel interdisciplinary approach for cultural geoheritage and geohazards.

This volume covers, without being limited to, the following subjects:

  1. Detailed and visually accurate mapping of the underwater and terrestrial relief based on significant, multitemporal, validated information and data, collected using state-of-the-art technologies (multibeam, ROV, UAV surveys, etc.) to recognize complex geological structures (fault ruptures, ground fracture opening, volcanic tremors, seismic wave propagation, volcanic edifice growth, dyke intrusion, and massive—potentially tsunamigenic—slope failures) and potential geo-hazards.
  2. Advanced image processing algorithms that ameliorate the visual appearance of the photo-textured 3D models of the surface and refine the understanding of geological features and processes.
  3. Designed and developed tools for multimedia content management in 3D software used for the creation of 3D environments and applications for mobile, desktop, and the web, providing narrative scenarios and producing interactive experiences for VR and AR environments without the need for specialized programming knowledge. VR/AR technologies facilitate integrated and immersive visualizations and multisensory rendering, providing new insights into geological modeling.
  4. Development of technologically advanced applications for educational and entertaining cultural products. Thus, the understanding and identification of geological elements by a significantly wider audience may contribute to a sustainable management strategy including a community's alertness and adaptability to changes from multiple geohazards.

This Special Issue is under the framework of VIRTUALDiver (NSRF 2014-2020) (www.virtualdiver.gr) and EU Research and Innovation Action, NEANIAS (https://www.neanias.eu).

Prof. Paraskevi Nomikou
Prof. Karantzalos Konstantinos
Prof. Kalliopi Baika
Dr. Hans-Balder Havenith
Prof. Lazaros Grammatikopoulos
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Published Papers (1 paper)

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Research

Article
Virtual Geosite Communication through a WebGIS Platform: A Case Study from Santorini Island (Greece)
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(12), 5466; https://doi.org/10.3390/app11125466 - 12 Jun 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1793
Abstract
We document and show a state-of-the-art methodology that could allow geoheritage sites (geosites) to become accessible to scientific and non-scientific audiences through immersive and non-immersive virtual reality applications. This is achieved through a dedicated WebGIS platform, particularly handy in communicating geoscience during the [...] Read more.
We document and show a state-of-the-art methodology that could allow geoheritage sites (geosites) to become accessible to scientific and non-scientific audiences through immersive and non-immersive virtual reality applications. This is achieved through a dedicated WebGIS platform, particularly handy in communicating geoscience during the COVID-19 era. For this application, we selected nine volcanic outcrops in Santorini, Greece. The latter are mainly associated with several geological processes (e.g., dyking, explosive, and effusive eruptions). In particular, they have been associated with the famous Late Bronze Age (LBA) eruption, which made them ideal for geoheritage popularization objectives since they combine scientific and educational purposes with geotourism applications. Initially, we transformed these stunning volcanological outcrops into geospatial models—the so called virtual outcrops (VOs) here defined as virtual geosites (VGs)—through UAV-based photogrammetry and 3D modeling. In the next step, we uploaded them on an online platform that is fully accessible for Earth science teaching and communication. The nine VGs are currently accessible on a PC, a smartphone, or a tablet. Each one includes a detailed description and plenty of annotations available for the viewers during 3D exploration. We hope this work will be regarded as a forward model application for Earth sciences’ popularization and make geoheritage open to the scientific community and the lay public. Full article
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