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Behind almost every scientific discovery is a fantastic image. Too often, however, publishers shrink researchers’ pics into tiny blocks speckled with letters, bury them in supplementary materials or leave them entirely out of the final work. To restore scientific imagery to its proper place, curators at the American Museum of Natural History assembled a new exhibit called “Picturing Science: Museum Scientists and Imaging Technologies.”
The heads of 10 different Opistophthalmus scorpion species are pictured here, photographed under ultraviolet light. Although transparent tissue called hyaline makes scorpions’ exoskeletons fluoresce under UV light, its benefit to the creatures isn't known.
X-ray cameras help curators peer inside ancient objects such as the Tibetan figures shown here. The alternative to revealing their craftsmanship with radiation? Chopping them into pieces. See-through images of the bronze statue reveal its hollow body was pounded out of sheet metal. They also show builders used molten metal to cast its hands and feet.
The bony plates of armor distributed within this armadillo lizard’s skin are crucial to understanding its place in the course of evolution. To see the lizard's plates, also called osteoderms, biologists put it into a computed tomography machine. The device slowly rotates a sample and exposes it to X-rays. Computers then build the image data into a full 3-D model and preserve a sample’s internal structure without so much as a scratch.
When a museum anthropologist couldn’t safely pry a crumbling leather sheath off of an ancient Egyptian knife (above), he turned to computed tomography. The X-ray scans allowed him to see through the decorative cover and find ornate writing on the blade (below).
That's what Richard Dawkins thought at one time...then he changed his mind.
Originally posted by anon72
Man, I could look at this stuff all day. Just look at the armodillo pic. How can anyone think that there isn't something behind that design... meaning master build by someone else (some great power than we).