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Decomposition Facilities

These facilities comprise a dedicated room and external compound for the investigation of insect and larvae life cycle and behaviour, and determining decomposition timelines.

Decomposition is a fast-developing discipline within the Forensic Science field. Determining the time since a victim was accessible to insect colonisation is a very important part of narrowing down a timeline of a crime. The facilities also allow students to investigate the impact of drugs and chemicals on insect growth and behaviour, this can be imperative when encountering insect activity at a crime scene.

The decomposition facilities have been used by our students and researchers to investigate:

  • Insect attraction to burn victims
  • Decomposition rates buried in different mediums
  • Soil
  • Concrete
  • Lime
  • Sand
  • Insect behaviour after ingesting drugs
  • Cocaine
  • Paracetamol
  • Alcohol
  • Diamorphine
  • Larval growth on different tissues
  • Pork
  • Heart
  • Liver
  • Kidney
  • Lungs
  • Chicken
  • Beef
  • Insect succession to remains

Equipment

  • Insect husbandry environments
  • Sanyo MIR-154 Temperature Incubators
  • Beko extra-large fridge freezer
  • Indesit tall larder fridge
  • Interring containers

Staff

Photo of Decomposition Facilities