How to Build a Better Biomodel

December 21, 2016 Posted by: Alex Warneke
For many visitors and students the use of tactile learning tools can be critical in forming intellectual and emotional connections to the park and it’s resources. As interpreters of these special places, we are constantly looking for new and innovative ways to bring the Park Service Mission to life. With this in mind, we are excited to announce our newest educational program at Cabrillo National Monument, 3D Cabrillo
Photo showing 3d models of chitons
3D Cabrillo is a multifaceted educational resource and experience available to educators both near and far. In collaboration with the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and the La Jolla Library, we utilized a special imagining program to create biomodels of many of the prominent organisms found in our Rocky Intertidal Zone. Free downloadable versions of these models are available to the public on our website at the 3D Cabrillo Biomodel Library. These models can be produced on any 3D printer, such as those available through the San Diego public library. Our hope is that this will increase accessibility of park resources throughout our community.
Photo showing 3dmodel of an octopus
In conjunction with the biomodel library, we developed an interactive Student Resource Manual. This takes students through a step-by-step guide on how to create and render 3D models. Using free software available online and a mobile device with a camera, these models are easily created. The 3D Cabrillo program was specifically developed to connect students to the natural resources of the park, while simultaneously teaching 3D printing techniques. We look forward to implementing this program with High Tech Elementary during their upcoming Spring semester.
Using the new tools available to us, we seek to reach the public in different and exciting ways. Our goal is that this initiative will highlight the public’s important role in awareness and stewardship of our public lands, a tenant inherent in the very mission of the Park Service. By connecting nature and technology, we look to foster excitement in the next generation of environmental stewards.
 This program was adapted from the Scanning the Seas projected initiated by Dr. Andrew D. Thaler. A special thanks to Dr. Thaler and his ongoing commitment to ocean science education. An additional thank-you to the curators of the marine collections at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and their assistance on creating this online resource.

3D Cabrillo, Biomodels, Education

Last updated: December 21, 2016

Park footer

Contact Info

Mailing Address:

1800 Cabrillo Memorial Drive
San Diego, CA 92106


619 523-4285

Contact Us