The Montgomery College Science Center Atrium has a new prehistoric welcoming display: a replica skeleton of a Tyrannosaurus rex.
Known as “Stan,” the replica is 20 feet tall and nearly 35 feet long, and was assembled Friday.
The skeleton was donated by Discovery Communications, which showcased it in the lobby of its Silver Spring headquarters before corporate offices moved to New York.
“I expect him to be displayed for many years,” James Sniezek, instructional dean for chemical and biological sciences at the college, said in a statement. “Enough for numerous generations of students to marvel at him. He is museum quality.”
The assembly team began work at 7 a.m. Friday, with bones and joints scattered around the atrium slowly added to the main structure using a scissor lift and some teamwork. Stan’s legs, pelvis and spine were up by 10 a.m.
The college chose the science center because it was the only building on campus with an atrium large enough to fit the replica, Sniezek said. He added that it’s a good fit because several faculty members in the building have backgrounds in paleontology, geology and early earth chemistry.
Stan is based on a T-rex specimen discovered in the Hell Creek Formation in South Dakota in 1987, according to a news release from the college. The rock group spans multiple states and has been the sites of many fossil excavations.
Amateur paleontologist Stan Sacrison found the dinosaur, providing its namesake. There are about 30 “Stans” displayed around the world.
The T-rex lived in western North America at the end of the Late Cretaceous period about 90 million to 66 million years ago, according to the Museum of Natural History. It was one of the biggest and most feared carnivores of the era.