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Peter S. Ungar
Paleoanthropology Laboratory and
Neogene Paleoecology Working Group

Department of Anthropology
University of Arkansas
Fayetteville, AR 72701

Research supported by
National Science Foundation
grant #BCS-0315157

Texture Analysis

Microwear Texture Analysis

Microwear texture analysis is a new method for quantifying patterns of dental microwear based on three-dimensional surface data and scale-sensitive fractal analysis. Unlike earlier methods, microwear texture analysis does not require the subjective identification of individual features. Thus, it is less affected by observer error and analysis is automated and much less time intensive.

Microwear texture analysis was recently introduced (Scott et al., 2005b) [PDF version] in the journal Nature. Three-dimensional data on dental microwear were collected using a Sensofar white-light scanning confocal microscope. These data were leveled using SolarMap surface topography analysis software and analyzed using Kfrax surface analysis software and scripts prepared in Matlab. Currently, a version of Toothfrax is available for beta testing. Toothfrax includes surface leveling, scale sensitive fractal analysis algorithms, and outputs for measures of surface complexity and anisotropy.

Sample data files for microwear texture analysis can be downloaded here.

Texture Analysis: Pages in this section

» Area Scale Fractal Complexity
» » Relative Area
» » Fractal Dimension

» Length-scale anisotropy of relief
» » 'Exact Proportion' Normalization
» » Vector rosette

CREDITS: Design by InterraMedia | Gorilla Photographs: Peter S. Ungar | © Neogene Paleoecology Working Group