Today, we spent some time sharing with our Chilean colleagues and site workers more about the research that we're doing at Cerro Ballena. Specifically, Vince and Adam shared a short presentation featuring some highlights of the Smithsonian's 3D digitization work, and what they're able to do, in terms of digitizing physical objects, with different kinds of scanning technology. It's the second time I've heard the talk, I'm still surprised by the reality of what their techniques and expertise can accomplish. Essentially, our goal is to digitize entire skeletons of fossil whales, as they lay in the ground, to preserve as much key information about how they died, before they're excavated and removed from the site.
Left to right, inside the tent, Vince and Adam explain the principles of how long-range laser scanning works, with Carolina Gutstein, far right, translating for the site workers in the foreground. Note the time-lapse camera rig above the laptop (Photo NDP)
One of the fossil whale specimens at Cerro Ballena, under the makeshift (but formidable) tent, which casts a wonderful, dappled light at midday. The team clusters around the laptop for the 3D digitization presentation. (Photo NDP)