Xradia 3D X-ray Images Key For University of Texas Scan of Famous Fossil “Lucy”
Ultra High Resolution Xradia MicroXCT 3D CT Scanner Provides Insight Into World’s Oldest Complete Adult Erect Walking Skeleton
Concord, CA – April 29,2009: Xradia, Inc., a developer and manufacturer of ultra-high-resolution 3D X-ray imaging systems, today announced that its scanner was used by researchers at The University of Texas at Austin in the examination of fossil Lucy, the world’s most famous ancient human ancestor fossil who lived 3.2 million years ago. The company’s Xradia MicroXCT™ scanner, a 3D X-ray computed tomography system with sub-micron resolution, was used by The University of Texas at Austin team to scan selected pieces of the fossil, and the resulting data will assist in their studies to learn how Lucy’s skeleton supported her movement and posture, and how it compares to modern humans and apes.
Xradia’s MicroXCT breakthrough design enables the highest resolution images and the best sample size and shape flexibility available commercially, making it possible to understand structural features on an ever finer scale. Unlike traditional imaging methods, Xradia’s MicroXCT does not require sample preparation like cross-sectioning, making it a powerful tool for studying precious, one-of-a-kind specimens like fossil Lucy.
“Scanning fossils is just one example of how the MicroXCT 3D X-ray scanner makes it possible to perform full volume imaging of a sample and view the full three-dimensional structure with high resolution—making it a compelling alternative for many fields of research,” noted Rod Browning, CEO of Xradia. “Anthropologists and students around the world will have access to Lucy’s fossils now that she’s archived in a digital format—ensuring that she’ll help the study of evolution for years to come.”
“Lucy is the oldest and most complete adult skeleton, erect-walking human fossil that has been discovered to date,” noted John Kappelman, professor of anthropology for The University of Texas at Austin’s College of Liberal Arts.
“The ten days we spent scanning Lucy was the easy part,” said Richard Ketcham, associate professor of geological sciences in the Jackson School of Geosciences and director of the university’s High-Resolution X-ray Computed Tomography Facility, one of the world’s premier labs for this work. “For the next several months, the research team will be reviewing and processing the data and generating images to analyze Lucy’s skeleton and begin to answer important questions ranging from whether she climbed among the tree branches, how her skeleton supported her movement and how she walked upright on two legs. The imagery we obtained with the Xradia scanner is stunning, and will allow scientists to see details of Lucy’s anatomy that have never been seen before.”
Lucy is currently on loan from the Ethiopian Government and on tour in the U.S. as part of a world premiere exhibit organized by the Houston Museum of Natural Science.
The Carl Zeiss Group is an international leader in the fields of optics and optoelectronics. In fiscal year 2011/12 the company’s approximately 24,000 employees generated revenue of nearly 4.2 billion euros. In the markets for Industrial Solutions, Research Solutions, Medical Technology and Consumer Optics, ZEISS has contributed to technological progress for more than 160 years and enhances the quality of life of many people around the globe. The Carl Zeiss Group develops and produces planetariums, eyeglass lenses, camera and cine lenses and binoculars as well as solutions for biomedical research, medical technology and the semiconductor, automotive and mechanical engineering industries. ZEISS is present in over 40 countries around the globe with about 40 production facilities, over 50 sales and service locations and service locations and approximately 20 research and development sites. Carl Zeiss AG is fully owned by the Carl Zeiss Stiftung (Carl Zeiss Foundation). Founded in 1846 in Jena, the company is headquartered in Oberkochen, Germany.
About Carl Zeiss Microscopy
The Microscopy business group at ZEISS is the world’s only manufacturer of light, X-ray and electron microscopes. The company’s extensive portfolio enables research and routine applications in the life and materials sciences. The product range includes light and laser scanning microscopes, X-ray microscopes, electron and ion microscopes and spectrometer modules. Users are supported for software for system control, image capture and editing. The Microscopy business group has sales companies in 33 countries. Application and service specialists support customers around the globe in demo centers and on site. The business group is headquartered in Jena, Germany. Additional production and development sites are in Oberkochen, Göttingen and Munich, as well as in Cambridge in the UK and Peabody, MA and Pleasanton, CA in the USA. The company has around 2,800 employees and generates revenue of 650 million euros. www.zeiss.de/press
Dr. Jochen Tham
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ZEISS, Carl Zeiss X-ray Microscopy
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