The Fraunhofer Institute uses Avizo to explore a Peruvian mummy CT-scan

Prof. Dr. Tomas Sauer - Fraunhofer EZRT / Universitat Passau

As part of the Big Picture project, researchers at Fraunhofer IIS are working on three dimensions images of objects with great precision. In order to demonstrate the progress of the project, which has begun in February 2018, they made the 3d Xray-CT acquisition of a mummy from the Linden-Museum Stuttgart collection, probably from the 11th-15th century.
Modern measurement systems are producing increasingly large volumes of extremely complex data that must be stored, processed and converted into usable information. While pure storage today is generally not a problem and a simple matter of effort, treatment is a major challenge. As part of the Big Picture project, on the Fraunhofer sites of Fürth, Deggendorf and Passau, a team of 10 people is working on advanced image processing methods, among others, to exploit the huge data image. Specially developed software tools allow researchers, for example, to segment image areas of a large data set, ie to divide them into smaller and selected areas. In addition, compression methods play a central role: with the newly developed software, the mummy’s high-resolution data can be viewed and analyzed with a standard laptop computer – previously very expensive and powerful industrial computers were needed for this purpose.
What is exactly behind the dozens of layers of cotton towels was not clear before the scan, except for the approximate age and origin of the mummy. After a first observation of the data, the researchers were able to confirm that it was indeed a squatting person, arms folded in front of the legs. Many funerary objects such as shells and bracelets could be identified in the dataset.