Jump to Main Content
Developing the use of Structure-from-Motion in mass grave documentation
- Baier, Waltraud, Rando, Carolyn
- Forensic science international 2016 v.261 pp. 19-25
- archaeology, forensic sciences, models, photographs
- Methods for mass-grave documentation have changed markedly since the first forensic investigations nearly 70 years ago. Recently, however, there has been little advancement in developing new and better methodology, especially when compared to other forensic disciplines and even within traditional archaeology. This paper proposes a new approach, using 3D modelling for the documentation and eventual analysis of mass-graves. Structure-from-Motion (SfM), which creates digital 3D models from a set of still photographs, was tested on a small, simulated mass grave. The results of this test suggest that the method offers resolution previously unavailable to mass-grave investigators, and facilitates stronger analytical potential than the more traditional methods. Further tests are needed to validate these methods, but these initial findings are promising and their application could enhance our knowledge of mass grave dynamics.