Paleontological Modeling Example—'Equisetites'

Photogrammetry using the "structure from motion" technique is quickly becoming a standard tool for documenting fossils. Regardless of whether a specimen is in situ or curated within a museum collection, the equipment is easy to transport and the processes for data acquisition can be standardized. The model presented here is an Equisetities fossil that was collected at Capitol Reef National Park and was photographed in the back of the field trailer. This specimen along with several in situ "trunks" comprise a remnant fossil Equisetites forest within the park that has interpretive value on late-Triassic paleoenvinomental conditions as well as being a national treasure that can be shared "virtually" with visitor and scientist.

3D Equisetites – Fossil Horsetail
Capitol Reef National Park, Utah

A 3D model. This model shows a block of rocks with textured surfaces. The model can be rotated and tilted using a computer interface.

Late Triassic Equisetites fossil found in Capitol Reef National Park, Utah.

Part of a series of articles titled Photogrammetry Applications and Examples.

Capitol Reef National Park

Last updated: April 30, 2021