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Morphometrics seeks to quantify shapes for the purposes of comparison. This work investigates two morphometric problems by applying the theory of shape-changing rigid-body mechanisms. The first problem is the analysis of a head growth in children. The second problem is the spatiotemporal evolution of the longitudinal human skull shape. These problems are specified with a set of curves that represent the cranium shapes as they change over time, in the child’s head as it grows and in the skull as it evolves. Using the rigid-body shape-changing mechanism design methodology, a chain of rigid links connected by revolute and prismatic joints is generated to approximate the set of curves. The advantage of approaching morphometrics in this way is that a modest number of physical parameters describes the changes between the curves.

Publication Date


Project Designation

Graduate Research

Primary Advisor

Andrew P Murray, David H Myszka

Primary Advisor's Department

Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering


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Morphometric Skull Analysis Using Jointed Chains of Rigid Bodies