I had the dataset lying around on a harddisk for many years as a few thousands of high quality jpeg files for space reasons. I’m not sure when or where I downloaded it, I think it was even before 2002. At this time there was no real use of it for 3D simulations, because of the weak computers. I can remember when I did a first small test with blender in 2005 or so, when I tried to render a downscaled dataset with only 512 MB of ram, it was so slooow. And now with all the GLSL possibilities in blender, it’s just amazing how nice and smooth it works only with a standard graphics card. I still can crash the software with to much data, but I didn’t even use a todays high-end system.
As an alternative you can try to search for other datasets.
I know of a few Visible Human Datasets from the Chinese. But they are ugly watermarked, not nice to use. There is also Korean Visible Human but I couldn’t even found a download location for this, only a pretty useless web-navigator which only shows images with 300 pixels width.
From Wiki: The female cadaver was encased and frozen in a gelatin and water mixture in order to stabilize the specimen for cutting. The specimen was then “cut” in the axial plane at .33 millimeter intervals, resulting in some 40 gigabytes of data. The process of grinding the surface away is entirely destructive to the specimen and leaves no usable or preservable “slice” of the cadaver.
So yes, you better be dead to get a scan.
Some “Making of” of the procedure:
Visible_Human_Chinese-Serial_sectioning_and_photographing.mpeg (right click, save as)