The Portable Light Dome, developed at the KU Leuven (Belgium), has been used to image Mesopotamian Cultural Heritage since the last decade in museums, university collections and archaeological excavations. Throughout this period several thousands of cuneiform tablets, seals & seal impressions, figurines, pottery and many other archaeological artifacts have been and are still being scanned, studied and published with the help of the Portable Light Dome (PLD). Successively, these efforts have been made via various projects funded by Research Fund KU Leuven, Herculesstichting, Programme Financing KU Leuven and Interuniversity Attraction Poles Belgium.
The RICH project (Reflectance Imaging for Cultural Heritage) aims to create a unique digital imaging tool for researching, studying, and exploring material characteristics of art and library materials in medieval and early modern times. An imaging device, IMROD (Imaging Module for Multi-spectral, Reflectance Or 3D), will be developed to produce a digital 2D+ record, through multidirectional and multispectral lighting sequences. Reflectance imaging, combined with the possibility to apply virtual illumination, enables the exploration of the material and structures in an interactive manner. A web portal will be implemented for valorisation and dissemination of the research. RICH aims to be an indispensable tool for research and understanding the material and tactile characteristics of art. RICH is a collaboration between four KU Leuven partners: Illuminare (Research Center for Medieval Art) is the promotor, ESAT-Visics, CS/Media and the University Library. Third party is the Museum Plantin-Moretus, Antwerp, Unesco World Heritage. The project started in July 2012 with a Hercules grant and will develop the next 3 years.