Photo examination of the main altar of the Bronnbach Monastery

Photo examination of the main altar of the Bronnbach Monastery

Last August we had the chance to photograph the main altar of the Bronnbach Monastery in Baden Wuerttemberg, Germany. In this report, I capture the operating procedure, the necessity to apply a special technical construction and the realization with our patented aerial system PHOTOLIFTER. Please enjoy the unusual look at beautiful historical artwork from 1712.

The target of this project was the disturbance-free, fast as cost-efficient monitoring and documentation of the actual status, unknown damages and hidden details, which are not visible from the ground. The 15 meters height of the Bronnbach alter were just a third of the altitude the PHOTOLIFTER had been used before – but not less demanding.

In Bronnbach the altar´s close proximity to the ceiling draws a special technical demand. It required the highest possible camera position that only expensive and disturbing scaffolding could have enabled – there is just a hand between the top of the alter top end and the arched ceiling.

Drones failure here in multiple ways. First of all, the authorities refuse free-flying objects in sensible historic buildings due to their potential danger – proven costly several times before. Secondly, drones have to keep a safe distance to walls, obstacles and especially the ceiling. Fatal, as their general disruption of unavoidable air turbulences that create a long-lasting fall out of dust.

The aerial systems we develop, build and operate on the location are customized prototypes. They are no free-flying blimps, helicopters, drones or comparable loose flying obstacles. They do not have rotating parts or any other element, which could cause a hazardous situation or create unwanted turbulences. Our patented LIFTERs remain connected to the ground, tread- and steering strings provide a calm and steady hovering position to work scientifically in calm accuracy.

For the view photographs taken so close to the ceiling, our cameras were attached above the balloons and levelled horizontally. As the top end of a high interior room is always full of air movement we had to upgrade the positioning system for the balloons to reach the necessary calm poise. Especially the high-resolution cameras respond fragile to any motion, as the dense pixel pattern intends to deliver immediately unsharp photos. Lifted up to the highest needed level it was possible to capture some of the shots you see below.

A working group of our customer – the Landesamt für Denkmalpflege of Baden Wuerttemberg ( State Department for Cultural Heritage Conservation of Baden Wurttemberg, in the south-west of Germany) – followed the camera view from the ground. In real-time, they led us to the specific details they were looking for.

We learned a lot that exciting day – a very satisfying result.

Daniel Roeseler

All photos © PHOTOLIFTER 2019

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