Photo via USM
If you’ve never heard of ‘Perak Man’, he’s the oldest skeletal remains found 30 years ago in the Lenggong Valley, Perak.
Now, thanks to a 3D virtual reconstruction method, a team of Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) researchers and 3D graphics expert from Brazil, Cicero Moraes, have managed to put a face to Perak Man, after two years working on the project!
As much of his skull was retrieved, scientists were able to scan and digitally reconstruct the skull before using modelling software to graft muscles, tendons and flesh onto the bones, which allowed them to generate the final image.
Photo via Bernama
One of the researchers, lecturer at USM School of Dental Sciences, Dr Johari Yap explained that Moraes needed information such as gender, age and lineage to produce facial tissue based on the average tissue thickness measured during previous studies.
“Because Perak Man is referred to as Australo-Melanesian and the descendent of Negrito ethnic group, the features of Negrito people greatly influence the final image,” he said.
Fun fact: Perak Man, the most complete skeleton found in Southeast Asia, was uncovered at Gua Gunung Runtuh by a team of archaeologists led by Prof Datuk Dr Zuraina Majid in 1990.
The funerary artefacts indicate that Perak Man was highly respected, as he was buried at the centre of the highest cave in Lenggong, and he was the only person buried there.
It’s also understood that he was perhaps a shaman and the most knowledgeable person in the group regarding survival, hunting, gathering, and other aspects of Palaeolithic daily life.
How cool is that!
by Kyle Roshen Jacob