Emma O'Donnell ’21


Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Project Title

Development of Three-Dimensional Models of Coral Reef

Presentation Link

View Emma's Presentation

I worked on developing a 3D model of a coral reef for the final grouper spawning-aggregation survey of a 10-year study. The model quantifies features of the reef, such as complexity, to provide insights into potential drivers for the species’ chosen aggregation areas. To build
the model, I swam transects of the reef while taking photos every half-second with two GoPro cameras on a rig. I then stitched the photos together in the photogrammetric processing program Agisoft Metashape Pro to generate a preliminary 3D model of the area that could be refined manually. Through this project, I gained invaluable experience as I worked alongside visiting researchers on two five-day fieldwork sessions. Furthermore, I had the chance to learn valuable technical skills using Metashape and developing the model for analysis. I look forward to incorporating the skills that I learned into my senior thesis research next year, which I hope will be in marine biology.

Internship Year


Project Category

Biodiversity and Conservation


Coral Reef Research Foundation (CRRF) - Koror, Palau


Steve Lindfield, Research Scientist, CRRF