The Dinosaur Isle Museum in Sandown is hosting a team of leading research scientists from the British Geological Survey (BGS) who will be working to bring the attraction’s unique collection, which has been gathered over the last Century, to a global audience.
The scientists have come to the Island with the latest laser scanners and high resolution cameras to capture 3D images and digital models of the many national and internationally important fossils that Dinosaur Isle holds.
The museum holds many unique ‘type’ specimens which are studied around the world however, their importance means that they rarely leave the safety of the museum. This new imaging will allow people from all over the world to appreciate the Islands collection.
As the fossils are scanned as many as 100,000 reference points are established, the BGS will then uploaded this information to the website www.3D-Fossils.ac.uk.
Using freely available software it will be possible to download and view the 3D digital images and photographs of the fossils from anywhere in the world, recreating them on your own computer screen or even view them on a 3D TV.
You will be able to spin the image around view it from all angles and all directions and if you have access to a digital printer you could build your own replica.
The Isle of Wight fossils will feature amongst 15,000 or so other specimens from all over the UK and these images will be available to all for non commercial use.
Dinosaur Isle general manager Peter Pusey said: “It is wonderful news that the scientific value of these important fossils found on the Island and held in the museum have once again been recognised.
“Collecting is still possible on the Isle of Wight and Dinosaur Isle organises many fossil hunting trips throughout the year.
“While all fossils are special, and many can be collected (with the landowners’ permission), it is important that scientifically significant finds are kept safe for all to study. A recent example of the importance of this is of nine year old Daisy Morris from Whitwell, who found a fossil on an Isle of Wight beach which turned out to be a new species.
“These images will allow our Island’s heritage to be studied and enjoyed around the world whilst the original specimens will remain safely housed in the museum close to the bedrocks where they were originally found.”
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