ENIGMA in CT System

On Tuesday, April 6, numerous German media published the latest information about seven ENIGMA cipher machines from the Second World War, which were accidentally found by divers in the Baltic Sea: In a newly founded cooperation between the Archaeological Office of Schleswig-Holstein and Fraunhofer IMTE, the machines are analyzed, digitally archived and prepared for their later restoration by the use of computed tomography, to eventually be exhibited at the Foundation Schleswig-Holstein State Museums Schloss Gottorf.

Fraunhofer IMTE recently invested in a YXLON FF35 CT system. However, insiders know that our application laboratory was significantly involved in this project.

Thorsten Buzug, executive director of the Fraunhofer Institution for Individualized and Cell-Based Medical Engineering (IMTE), shows an Enigma encryption machine that was examined with a high-resolution industrial computed tomography scanner. (Copyright: Axel Heimken / dpa)

(Copyright: ALSH)
Find the publications below (only German language):
Cipher machine Enigma: What secrets does the find from the Baltic Sea reveal?
Chiffriermaschine Enigma: Funde aus der Ostsee werden erforscht - [GEO]
Computer model more accurate than conventional CT scan.
"We took 4000 individual X-ray images of the Enigma from different directions and then algorithmically reconstructed them into a 3D image," says director Thorsten Buzug. "If you had used that dose on a human, it would have been more like radiation therapy." But radiation dose does not play a role for this ancient warfare technique. The resulting computer model is much more detailed than images from a conventional CT in a hospital, where the resolution is less than a millimeter, Buzug says. "Here, we're getting into the micrometer range."

World War II finds: machines are being researched and restored

Enigmen in der Ostsee : Funde aus dem Zweiten Weltkrieg: Maschinen werden erforscht und restauriert | shz.de
Archäologisches Landesamt Schleswig-Holstein
(Archaeological State Office Schleswig-Holstein)
ENIGMA in the computer tomograph: Digital archiving of archaeological finds
schleswig-holstein.de - Archäologisches Landesamt Schleswig-Holstein - ENIGMA im Computertomographen (schleswig-holstein.de)
Presse | Medien - Fraunhofer IMTE
"The digital archiving of ENIGMA is only the prelude to a longer-term cooperation of both institutions" says Prof. Thorsten Buzug, director of Fraunhofer IMTE, "new methods and virtual display formats are to be established with further archaeological finds", because at the end of the day, archaeological forensics is technically very similar to medical diagnostics. "The ENIGMA devices are archaeological finds that are recorded, examined, researched and published by the Archaeological Office of Schleswig-Holstein in cooperation with the finders and experts", emphasizes the head of the ALSH, Dr. Ulf Ickerodt. "We are glad to have found a regional scientific partner in Fraunhofer IMTE, with whom the restoration of such finds can be better planned." The finds will then finally be restored and exhibited at the Stiftung Schleswig-Holsteinische Landesmuseen Schloss Gottorf.

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