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Posts posted by tsehrhardt

  1. Thank you for the link and comments mplishka and mikefazz. With the ability to CT scan cadaver material, I was thinking it would be interesting to create physical replicates of an individual's geometry, potentially with 3D printing if there were an appropriate material that would fracture like bone.  The studies would build datasets for forensic interpretation. FEA might be the way to go for now. 


    I like the idea of printing out a bone in different colors. Mikefazz, did you use a filament-based printer for the photo you posted?

  2. I thought I'd do a quick post on why anthropologists need 3D printed bones in case anybody's interested.


    Real bones are expensive! Although we have real skeletons for teaching osteology, we are often limited to teaching the identification and examination of whole bones. For both forensic and archaeological contexts, osteologists need to be able to identify bones that are incomplete, scavenged, weathered, burned, or damaged in some other way. In such situations, the first question is whether or not the bone is human. In order to teach this advanced level of identification, we need bone fragments. We can't go around smashing bones to create the fragments, and if you're at an institution without a large archaeological collection of bones, 3D printing, especially of CT scans, can provide some fragments. Because CT scans contain internal structures (as opposed to laser scans of bones), we can digitally slice long bones to create cross-sections or cut models in ways that bone frequently fragments. We can potentially simulate trauma as well, although scans of bones with trauma or pathology would be even better.


    I've recently started working with the Virtual Curation Laboratory (https://vcuarchaeology3d.wordpress.com/) to 3D print bone fragments, whole bones, and bones with pathology or trauma. All of these things can be used to create "case studies" of single individuals or commingled individuals as well, and since they're plastic, we would have no problem using them outside for field exercises and excavations. Having age and/or sex is also important since higher quality 3D printed bones could be analyzed for those traits as well.


    I've added some pictures from a recent conference at VCU where we presented our preliminary work and displayed a few printed bones. Some of them still have some support structures, but you can see what we're going for. 


    Thanks for reading!






  3. I believe the base price is around $9k, but they might add a discount if you buy more than one license, and then of course each module has an additional price. I wrote it into my current grant since I had used it before and I really like the Simulation Module for measuring. I also like the editing power--after creating a segmentation mask, I can scroll through the slices and perform local thresholds or edit pixels to recover/fill areas of thin bone that I need. I haven't found that level of editing in other programs. 

  4. I am currently using Mimics to generate skull and face models for my research project. It does come with 3-matic which is supposed to facilitate processing of models for printing, but I haven't had a chance to learn it. For the few things I've printed so far, I exported .stl files from Mimics and cleaned them up in Meshlab. I have used 3DSlicer, but primarily the Grayscale Model Maker rather than the Model Maker. I haven't found great settings for the Model Maker and I'm not sure if it gives you the editing power that Mimics does. The Grayscale Model Maker creates surfaces which works well for "complete" bones. Extra pieces can be removed easily in Meshlab.

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