The “Botafumeiro” VR (2006)

What is it?

Santiago de Compostela, a city in Galicia, north-west of Spain, has been a famous Christian pilgrim’s spot since the Middle Ages. One distinctive element of the liturgy of the cathedral of Santiago de Compostela is the use of a giant censer “O Botafumeiro”. It is tied to a rope that hangs from the centre of the transept of the arms of the cathedral, and it is pulled through the transept of the cathedral describing, basically, a pendulum movement. A team of men called “Os Tiraboleiros” pulls the supporting rope in a pumping cycle in order to increase the energy of the system, and therefore the angle of oscillation. This pumping process transforms the pendulum motion into variable length pendulum motion. We present the  simulation of the liturgy of the Botafumeiro by VR techniques. The simulation allows the users to play the role of the Tiraboleiros forming a part of this old tradition.

The botafumerio VR06 is the evoluciont and the industrial version of the  Botafumeiro V.R. developed in 2003 for the “Galicia Dixital Expo” with near 100.000 visitors a year. This has taken to a fully redesign of the application. The system architecture, the specific developed interface and some points of the visualization system has been changed to confront the new challenges arisen, like the high users load, the restricted physical space to place the application or the adaptation to today computers requisites.

Pumping system