Gathering Metric Data using 3D Scans Collected at the UFBA Museu de Arqueologia e Etnologia in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil

While in Brazil, we opted not to collect the metrics that would be included in our metadata. Instead, we opted to use as much of our time scanning as possible, and collect the metrics from the 3D scans once we returned to the Nacogdoches. Those metrics that we calculated upon returning to the States last week include vessel height, orifice diameter, diameter at bottom of rim or neck, base diameter, and wall thickness (rim, body, and base).

Vessel height, orifice diameter, diameter at bottom of rim or neck, and base diameter were easily calculated using a simple measurement tool (ruler) in Geomagic DesignX. However, to get at those data associated with wall thickness (rim, body, and base), we sliced each digital image, and used the same measurement tool to measure the rim, body and base that were exposed in the vessel’s profile.

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Sliced 3D scan of Vessel II-045.0 from the Calderon Collection.
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 Sliced 3D scan of small Aratu burial vessel (child) from the Calderon Collection.
(Click to enlarge)

By splitting the 3D image, we gain access to a profile of the vessel that allows us to collect metrics that would otherwise be difficult to attain. All of the metrics  gathered during this project will be made available on our digital repository in the near future.

Many thanks to the UFBA Museu de Arqueologia e Etnologia for their continued support of this project.

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Written by zselden

Selden (PhD, Texas A&M University, 2013) is a US Marine Corps veteran, cyclist, kayaker, backpacker, hiker, climber, fisherman and general all-around outdoor enthusiast. His research is focused at the confluence of archaeological methods and digital technology, and he is particularly interested in the application of 3D technologies to archaeological problems, geometric morphometrics, network analyses, predictive modeling, archaeological theory, and archaeological science.