The challenge of restoring Notre Dame after the fire in April presents an opportunity to unravel the techniques of the time,大卫温德兰教授说，德国勃兰登堡科技大学建筑史主席科特布斯·森弗滕堡，最近推断出有多复杂，late Gothic vaults were constructed.
What is special about vaulted ceilings?
‘A vault is a self-supporting ceiling built of masonry which is stable due to its form – which is curved or double curved.拱形天花板是一个美丽的建筑特征，但它的主要作用是，当屋顶被烧毁时，教堂内部受到保护。
‘If a vault has the wrong shape,你可以随心所欲地建造它，但它会倒塌。我们的印象是他们（中世纪的石匠）非常清楚他们在做什么。我常常张开嘴站在那里想：“天哪，他们很好。“”
You investigated the design principles of late Gothic vaults through a project called雷氏拱顶设计.拱顶最初是如何建造的？
“我们可以假设他们在猜测，但那是非常危险的。在历史资料中，我们确实发现了一些崩塌，但很少。Somehow they did it right and what is interesting for us historically is to understand what their idea of mechanics was.
‘These structures are extremely complex in their shape because they need this curvature to be stable.我们正在研究的问题是：建筑大师怎么能准确地告诉石匠他们必须做什么？他们必须（传送必要的几何信息）使每一个石匠都能准确地按照项目生产这件作品，and to make them fit together.
How did you work out the methods behind the complex late Gothic vault at St Anne's Church in Annaberg-Buchholz,德国？
‘The process is to understand how I can create a system which I can draw in the plane.And we were able to do that.我们在拱顶上做了很多三维测量。We analysed these data on a computer and we reconstructed the geometry from there.这就是（结构）设计的假设。Then we had to work out how that was done.
‘We tried to understand what design procedures for geometry they used.而且，根据我们对时间应用几何的了解，we figured out what could have been the way,but we had to try it out.'
‘A vaulted ceiling is a beautiful architectural feature,but its main role is that the inside of the church is protected when the roof burns down.' Prof.David WendlandUniversity of Technology Cottbus-Senftenberg,德国
“我们必须全面绘制（整个）拱顶，在同一个尺寸（它）应该被建造。We did that on a plaster surface (of 180m二）在那里你可以用针画画。
'从这张图，你必须制作模板（可以用来追踪石头切割指令的二维切口），你必须了解这些模板是如何工作的，才能制作出弯曲的石头。So we made it all the way from what we would call today the executing drawing to the production of the stone member.
‘We now understand how the geometric design and the instructions for carving were made in the period of late Middle Ages and Early Modern (from around 1250 to late 16th世纪）。
‘Until now,only the modern procedures – from 19th百年前——是众所周知的。
Why is it so important for restoration to understand how medieval vaulting was built?
‘The process you use for designing and planning also determines the shape.所以，如果你使用一个现代的过程，你会得到一个不同的——也许是轻微的，but clearly visible – from the shape of the original.'
What damage did Notre Dame's vaulting sustain?
尖顶和它正下方的拱顶（建于）19thcentury.在火灾中，尖顶大致朝着主立面的方向下落，最大的破坏发生在中堂拱顶（12th世纪）。12分之一thcentury webbing (infill between the ribs),also in the transversal area,它已经倒塌了。”
是 this earlier vaulting in Notre Dame simpler than the 19thcentury structures?
‘But in Notre Dame the webbings are of cut stone and in the period we studied they are made of bricks.
‘You can chop a piece away to make a brick fit in place.But with stones you cannot just stand on the scaffolding and chop them to the right size – you have to prepare them beforehand.There is no book where you can read (how they did) that.'
“从保护的角度来看，你应该复制19th世纪金库（根据19th世纪方法）。But we should definitely reconstruct the medieval vaults as they were in the Middle Ages and we still have to understand how this was done.
‘I think we should use this very sad moment to learn how this was done,to restore it in a way that also makes us understand very well what is there and to have this knowledge again in our culture.'
“我们（历史学家和修复专家）都有点担心现在会有一场热潮，但是…我认为如果我们组织的话这是可行的，concentrate and mobilise a lot of resources.
现在有了科学家(with already more than 170 members of many different areas) that tries to bring together all the know-how necessary for reconstructing Notre Dame in the most authentic and most respectful way.这是绝对可行的。”
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Originally published by视界