Research could reveal colour of dinosaur skin

A U of R physicist is using the synchrotron in Saskatoon to get a closer look at a preserved dinosaur skin sample.
70 million year old dinosaur skin. (CBC)

A University of Regina physicist is trying to solve a 70 million year old mystery, the answer to which could be found in a well-preserved piece of dinosaur skin found in Alberta.

Physicist Mauricio Barbi hopes the research conducted at the Canadian Light Source synchotron in Saskatoon could reveal clues about the dinosaur's colour and diet.

The skin, found close to a river bed near Grande Prairie, Alberta, is the only three-dimensional sample in the world.

"What was so special about those animals? Was it just because the skin had something different that made them so successful? Because they were walking on this land many millions of years. It can tell us a lot," Barbi said.

Scientists have used feathers to reconstruct what some dinosaurs might have looked like. This is the first time a piece of skin has been found intact.