• forensic science;
  • forensic anthropology;
  • digital image;
  • scanner;
  • photographic documentation;
  • Lovejoy aging method

Abstract:  A simple technique for imaging the human skeleton with a flatbed scanner is presented using the auricular surface of the ilium as an example. A flatbed scanner with resolution capabilities of 600 dpi or greater allows for images of human bones. The auricular surface of the ilium was selected to demonstrate this technique as it is a fairly three-dimensional area that can be difficult to record photographically. Fifty left ilia of various ages at death from the Athens Collection were selected from which three observers (SCF, CE, and IM) scored the morphology of the auricular surface using a well-established aging method. Observations were taken of the dry bone, of digital photographs of the bone, and of scanned images of the bone, and in that sequence. Results indicate that scores of scanned images are equivalent or better than digital images of the same ilia. This technique allows for sharing data electronically with ease.