3D Forensic Science: can security systems contribute?

3D Forensic Science: can security systems contribute?

3d printed skull

An interesting new article suggests that technology and investigative techniques have developed enough that '3D Forensic Science' should now be considered a distinct interdisciplinary field of forensics. That includes 3D imaging, modelling and printing for crime reconstruction.

The article, 3D forensic science: A new field integrating 3D imaging and 3D printing in crime reconstruction is published in the latest issue of the journal Forensic Science International: Synergy. It's written by Rachael M. Carew, James French, and Ruth M. Morgan.

Here's some of what they say:

"'3D forensic science' (3DFS) brings together the range of approaches involving 3D techniques (such as 3D imaging, 3D modelling, and 3D printing) in crime reconstructions, and includes the many different types of materials being imaged, ranging from marks and impressions, fragmentary human remains, weapons, tools, and bullets (exhibits), vehicles, or entire scenes of crime.

"It covers different forms of imaging, from surface scanning or clinical imaging modalities, as well as the resulting scan or image data, 3D modelling and post-processing stages.

Finger print on glass

"3DFS also incorporates the different types of 3D printing for replicating crime materials and ultimately, the range of 3D presentation methods, including body mapping, animated models, virtual models, and physical replicas.

"Importantly, 3DFS addresses reconstructions from micro to macro scale, and the resulting 3D reconstruction can be an accurate representation, or an accurate scaled-up or scaled-down model.

"3DFS incorporates a consideration of each stage of the forensic science process from 3D imaging to the presentation of these materials as evidence and incorporates a consideration of the decision-making at each stage of the process that is intrinsic to these approaches, as well as the empirical evidence-bases that underpin research and casework."

This has got us thinking: Does data recorded by security systems or devices have a role to play in contributing towards these 3D crime reconstruction models? It seems likely that images from multiple cameras and angles would certainly be useful.

This could well be an area where equipment manufacturers and industry/data regulators could work with police and other forensics experts to optimise the way their products and systems can contribute to this relatively new field of evidence gathering and presentation.

Read or download the full paper here.

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