Digitising the Sumatran Rhino

By Laura Reeves
Protolabs casestudy |  Yxlon rhino

Understanding the millions of animal species that live around us and existed before us is an ongoing challenge for scientists in a spectrum of research fields, but with advancements in industrial imaging and 3D printing we can bring extinct species back to life. Okay, we’re not talking about Jurassic park, but we are now able to replicate the extinct and living species at a level that will allow new insights into their lives.

Take, for example, the Sumatran rhinoceros, featured as part of the Disappearing legacies: the world as a forest exhibition at the Centre of Natural History (Cenak) in Hamburg. Using industrial x-ray and tomography technology at YXLON International, the complete reconstruction of this rare rhino’s skull was made possible in finite detail (100 microns), allowing new conclusions about its structure and bone density to be drawn.

We were able to take YXLON’S CAD design for the skull and manufacture it using our advanced 3D printing processes – all in time for Dr Thomas Kaiser, Head of Mammology and Paleoanthropology at Cenak to feature the finished model at their exhibition.


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Tagged: 3D Printing