Lawrence M. Witmer, PhD
Professor of Anatomy
Chang Professor of Paleontology

Dept. of Biomedical Sciences
Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine
Life Science Building, Rm 123
Ohio University
Athens, Ohio 45701 USA

Phone: 740 593 9489
Fax: 740 593 2400
Email: witmerL@ohio.edu

 

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Common Language Summary
The Visible Interactive Pachycephalosaur.
This page presents our work on the 3D anatomical structure of the skull of pachycephalosaurs, which are Cretaceous ornithischian dinosaurs. Three species are featured: (1) the holotype fossil skull of Stegoceras validum (UALVP 2), collected from the Dinosaur Park Formation of Alberta, Canada, and housed at the University of Alberta; (2) two fossil skulls of Sphaerotholus edmontonensis (MRF 360, MRF 361), collected from the Hell Creek Formation of southwestern North Dakota and housed at the Marmarth Research Foundation; and (3) a cast of the holotype skull of Prenocephale prenes (ZPAL MgD-1/104) collected from the Nemegt Formation of Mongolia. These resources are outgrowths of our more technical work and are intended to serve as STEM educational aids for K–12 and undergraduate students, as well as researchers. The Stegoceras and Sphaerotholus specimens were CT scanned at the University of Texas at Austin, and the cast of Prenocephale was CT scanned at OhioHealth O’Bleness Hospital in Athens, Ohio. The scientific work on this project was done by several WitmerLab members, including Jason Bourke, Ruger Porter, James Nassif, Ryan Ridgely, and Larry Witmer. More content will be added in the future. The project is funded by grants from the National Science Foundation.
 

Check out our other Visible Interactive Anatomy sites! 

Download the µCT scan data in DICOM format and 3D-printable STLs at MorphoSource.org

Some of the work featured here has been published:
Bourke, J. M., Wm. R. Porter, R. C. Ridgely, T. R. Lyson, E. R. Schachner, P. R. Bell, and L. M. Witmer. 2014. Breathing life into dinosaurs: tackling challenges of soft-tissue restoration and nasal airflow in extinct species. Anatomical Record 297:2148–2186. For more on this article, including additional visualizations, and press materials, visit the site here.

Sketchfab animations

 
 
3D PDFs Videos
3D PDFs allow anyone with even the free Acrobat Reader to interactively manipulate the 3D models that we generate with powerful software like Avizo. The skull and individual bones can be spun around, isolated, made transparent, hidden, etc. The files can be saved to your local computer. We provide each 3D PDF in different resolutions and files sizes to match your interest and the power of your computer. View our mini-tutorial.
NOTE: Bugs in many browsers prevent them from running 3D PDFs in a browser window, so please save it to your system and then launch it.
 

3D PDF of the skull of the pachycephalosaurian dinosaur Stegoceras validum (UALVP 2), collected from the Dinosaur Park Formation of Alberta. Note: the skull has been digitally prepared to be matrix-free, so use the slice tools in Acrobat to view the internal anatomy.
Download a 28 MB 3D PDF
 

3D PDF of the skull of the pachycephalosaurian dinosaur Stegoceras validum (UALVP 2), collected from the Dinosaur Park Formation of Alberta, showing the olfactory turbinates, brain endocast, endosseous labyrinth, and neurovasculature.
Download a 32 MB 3D PDF
 

3D PDF of the skull of the pachycephalosaurian dinosaur Sphaerotholus edmontonensis (MRF 360), collected from the Hell Creek Formation of North Dakota, showing the olfactory turbinates, brain endocast, endosseous labyrinth, and neurovasculature.
Download a 29 MB 3D PDF
 

3D PDF of a cast of the skull of the pachycephalosaurian dinosaur Prenocephale prenes (ZPAL MgD-1/104), the holotype specimen collected from the Upper Cretaceous Nemegt Formation of Mongolia.
Download a 15 MB 3D PDF

 

Photos

 

 
Animation of sagittal microCT slices through the skull of the pachycephalosaurian dinosaur Stegoceras validum (UALVP 2). The specimen was scanned at the University of Texas High-Resolution CT Facility (UTCT) in March 2010.
Download a 23 MB QuickTime version (HD: 1920x1080)
 
 

Animation of horizontal microCT slices through the skull of the pachycephalosaurian dinosaur Stegoceras validum (UALVP 2). The specimen was scanned at the University of Texas High-Resolution CT Facility (UTCT) in March 2010
Download a 15 MB QuickTime version (HD: 1920x1080)

 
 

Animation of axial microCT slices through the holotype skull of the pachycephalosaurian dinosaur Stegoceras validum (UALVP 2). The specimen was scanned at the University of Texas High-Resolution CT Facility (UTCT) in March 2010.
Download a 15 MB QuickTime version (HD: 1920x1080)

 
 

Animation of sagittal microCT slices through the skull of the pachycephalosaurian dinosaur Sphaerotholus edmontonensis (MRF 360). The specimen was scanned at the University of Texas High-Resolution CT Facility (UTCT) in July 2009.
Download a 37 MB QuickTime version (HD: 1920x1080)

 
 

Animation of horizontal microCT slices through the skull of the pachycephalosaurian dinosaur Sphaerotholus edmontonensis (MRF 360). The specimen was scanned at the University of Texas High-Resolution CT Facility (UTCT) in July 2009.
Download a 27 MB QuickTime version (HD: 1920x1080)

 
 

Animation of axial microCT slices through the skull of the pachycephalosaurian dinosaur Sphaerotholus edmontonensis (MRF 360). The specimen was scanned at the University of Texas High-Resolution CT Facility (UTCT) in July 2009.
Download a 19 MB QuickTime version (HD: 1920x1080)

 

Witmer is responsible for the content of the website. Content provided here is for educational and research purposes only, and may not be used for any commercial purpose without the permission of L. M. Witmer and other relevant parties.

This project was funded by grants from the National Science Foundation.

  Ohio University
Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine
Irvine Hall, Athens, Ohio 45701
740-593-2530 740-597-2778 fax
 

Last updated: 11/03/2016