Portable 3D laser technology preserves Texas dinosaur’s rare footprint

Michael J. Polcyn

Portable 3D laser technology preserves Texas dinosaur’s rare footprint

Original%20track%2CT.Adams.jpg Using portable 3D laser technology, scientists have preserved electronically a rare 110 million-year-old fossilized dinosaur footprint that was previously excavated and built into the wall of a bandstand at a Texas courthouse in the 1930s.

The laser image preserves what is called a "type specimen" footprint — an original track used many years ago to describe a new species of dinosaur, says paleontologist Thomas L. Adams at SMU.

Portable 3D laser scanners capture original fossil morphology and texture, making it possible to use the data for rapid 3D prototyping in foam or resin, Adams says.

"The track is scientifically very important," says Adams. "But it's also a historical and cultural icon for Texas."

Polcyn in New Scientist’s “Real Sea Monsters: Hunt for Predator X”

mosasaur1-utmuseum.jpgPaleontologist Michael J. Polcyn, director of the Visualization Laboratory in the SMU Huffington Department of Earth Sciences and SMU adjunct research associate, is quoted as an expert source in "Real Sea Monsters: The Hunt for Predator X."

The article by reporter James O'Donoghue was published in the October 2009 issue of the magazine New Scientist.

Polcyn is a world-recognized expert on the extinct marine reptile named Mosasaur.

Polcyn in Discovery Channel’s “Mega Beasts: T-Rex of the Deep”

Paleontologist Michael J. Polcyn, director of the Visualization Laboratory in the SMU Huffington Department of Earth Sciences and SMU adjunct research associate, appears as an expert source in "Mega Beasts: T-Rex of the Deep," a science documentary that aired Sept. 13 on the Discovery Channel. Polcyn is a world-recognized expert on the extinct marine reptile [...]

Mistaken ID for official Texas state dinosaur; name to change

It's a case of mistaken dino-identity. The official State Dinosaur of Texas is up for a new name, based on Southern Methodist University research that proved the titleholder has been misidentified. State Rep. Charles Geren of Fort Worth filed a resolution January 7 to change the name of the state dinosaur from Pleurocoelus to Paluxysaurus jonesi to correctly name the massive sauropod whose tracks and bones litter the central Texas Jones Ranch.

Load More Posts