If you ever stared at a chrysalis as a kid, patiently waiting for a beautiful new butterfly to emerge, you were probably left wondering just what was going on inside there. Was the caterpillar reconfiguring itself like a Transformer? Was it morphing like a Terminator? Nobody knows — except now everyone does thanks to these fascinating micro-CT 3D x-ray scans of the process.
Two research teams used the cutting edge imaging technique to routinely scan a chrysalis during its metamorphosis and generate 3D models of its organs and other internal structures changing over time. Smaller details — like details of the brain — are unfortunately still left out with the limitations of the technology. But as they improve, so will our understanding of this unique process.