This paper introduces Fourier transformation as a rapid, replicable means for characterizing and distinguishing patterns of microscopic wear on primate teeth. The two-dimensional power spectra obtained from numerical Fourier transformation are shown to be different between two test patterns, one of which is composed of linear features and the other of randomly-spaced dots. A comparison is made, using Fourier transformation, of dental microwear patterns of small samples of two primate species, Ateles geoffroyi, the spider monkey, and Chiropotes satanas, the bearded saki. Ateles, with a scratch-dominated pattern of microwear, has a Fourier transform resembling that of the linear test pattern. Chiropotes, with a pit-dominated microwear pattern, resembles the transform of the dot pattern. The significance of this is discussed in light of the dietary differences between the two species.
Kay, Richard F.
"Analysis of Primate Dental Microwear using Image Processing Techniques,"
Scanning Microscopy: Vol. 1
, Article 21.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/microscopy/vol1/iss2/21