An exact replica of Tutankhamun’s famous tomb has been opened in Luxor, Egypt, close to the 3,000-year-old original. The original one has now been closed to visitors in order to preserve it, after decades of tourist visits began to cause damage.
James Moran, the head of the EU Delegation to Egypt, said: “It is absolutely unique. What they have done is to give tourists in the future a chance to visit a perfect, perfect copy of the original tomb. But they have also added things inside to let people understand better who Tutankhamun was, how the tomb was discovered. It’s a little museum as well as being a tomb, and having seen the original myself three or four times, I cannot tell the difference.”
The replica is said to be an extremely accurate and sophisticated copy. Making it involved measuring 100 million points in every square metre of the original tomb.
Madrid-based company Factum Arte used laser scanners to capture the texture, shape and colours of the tomb, before reproducing it with machine-operated blades, some of which were less than two-tenths of a millimeter wide.
The project’s leaders acknowledge that visiting a replica will sound less appealing to many than seeing the real thing, but they hope that the facsimile, which is indiscernible from the original, will give visitors a better understanding of the tomb whilst preserving the original.