Smartphone app to let world see Dornier17 German bomber fly via RAF Museum

By Culture24 Reporter | 08 October 2013

A trick of technology will allow the public to see the Dornier17, the German bomber dramatically rescued from the waters of Goodwin Sands earlier this year, fly into focus at the RAF Museum and sites across the world.

An image of a smartphone showing a plane flying across a city square
A new smartphone innovation at the RAF Museum aims for the sky© redLoop
Gaming company Wargaming has given the museums £75,000 to develop an Augmented Reality App – Apparition: Dornier17 – making the plane visible in full-scale, 3D glory at an impressive sweep of global museums, including aviation and military museums in Madrid, Warsaw, New Zealand, The Netherlands and Canada.

A virtual projection of a plane flying above a military site
The science fiction future© redLoop
“We are now living in the science fiction future, described by William Gibson, where we can create virtual 3D objects that people can look at, walk around and explore,” said Dr Andy Bardill, of creators redLoop.

“We have used this technology to bring the Dornier17 back to life. It clearly has immense potential for augmenting museum collections.”

The idea aims to capitalise on the intense media interest surrounding the salvation of the bomber off the Kent coast.

“One of the challenges museums face is how to reach a younger generation – a demographic that author Mark Prensky called ‘digital natives’,” suggested Tracy Spaight, of Wargaming.

“Young people are used to interacting with content in ways that museums are only just beginning to explore.

“We are pushing the envelope to create interactive experiences that will help enrich our historical understanding and bring a new generation to museums.”

The military illusion will also be available at the Cosford home of the RAF Museum, whose General Director, Peter Dye, said the app represented a “new era” of exhibition displays.

More pictures:

A photo of a plane flying over a military site as seen through a smartphone
© redLoop
An image of a virtual plane flying through a blue sky
© redLoop
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