Its bad enough that fossils, buried deep in layers of rock for thousands or millions of years, may be damaged or missing pieces, but what really challenges paleontologists, according to University at Buffalo researchers, is the amount of deformation that most fossils exhibit.
Thats why Tammy Dunlavey, a masters degree candidate in the Department of Geology in the UB College of Arts and Sciences, and her colleagues are working on a computational method to morph fossils back to their original shapes by calculating and excising the deformation.
"Our goal is to develop computer programs that can reliably solve the deformation problem," noted Dunlavey, who on April 1 presented research on a new suite of "retrodeformation" programs at a Geological Society of America meeting (North-Central section) in St. Louis.
Ellen Goldbaum | University at Buffalo
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