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Social Sciences - Anthropology & Archaeology | Mapping Archaeological Landscapes from Space

Mapping Archaeological Landscapes from Space

Comer, Douglas C., Harrower, Michael J.

2013, XVI, 276 p. 116 illus., 73 illus. in color.

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  • Helps to familiarize archaeologists with satellite and remote sensing technology
  • Many contributors are NASA affiliated
  • Explores technologies such as synthetic aperture radar (SAR), Lidar, and multispectral/hyperspectral sensors

Mapping Archaeological Landscapes from Space: In Observance of the 40th Anniversary of the World Heritage Convention offers a concise overview of air and spaceborne imagery and related geospatial technologies tailored to the needs of archaeologists.  Leading experts including scientists involved in NASA’s Space Archaeology program provide technical introductions to five sections: 1) Historic Air and Spaceborne Imagery, 2) Multispectral and Hyperspectral Imagery, 3) Synthetic Aperture Radar, 4) Lidar, and 5) Archaeological Site Detection and Modeling.  Each of these five sections includes two or more case study applications that have enriched understanding of archaeological landscapes in regions including the Near East, East Asia, Europe, Meso- and North America.


Targeted to the needs of researchers and heritage managers as well as graduate and advanced undergraduate students, this volume conveys a basic technological sense of what is currently possible and, it is hoped, will inspire new pioneering applications. Particular attention is paid to the tandem goals of research (understanding) and archaeological heritage management (preserving) the ancient past. The technologies and applications presented can be used to characterize environments, detect archaeological sites, model sites and settlement patterns and, more generally, reveal the dialectic landscape-scale dynamics among ancient peoples and their social and environmental surroundings.  In light of contemporary economic development and resultant damage to and destruction of archaeological sites and landscapes, reflexively nurturing advances in applications of air and spaceborne technologies in archaeology is a matter of wide utility and a particularly appropriate goal at the 40th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention.


Content Level » Research

Keywords » Landsat and Aster imagery - NASA and archaeology - geospatial technology in archaeology - multispectral techonology and archaeology - remote sensing archaeology - satellites and archaeology in Turkey - spatial relationships in archaeology

Related subjects » Anthropology & Archaeology - Mechanical Engineering

Table of contents 

​ Chapter Outline Introduction: The History and Future of Geospatial Technologies in Archaeology The Corona NASA ROSES Project Use of Corona in Archaeology of China Section 1: Multispectral and Hyperspectral  Imagery Multispectral Technology and Archaeological Applications Understanding the Development of Nabataean Agriculture Through the Use of Landsat and Aster Imagery Using Hyperion at Faynan, Jordan Using Satellite Imagery to Monitor Change at Ancient Gordian, in Turkey Merging Satellite Observations and Hydrological Models Section 2: Synthetic Aperture Radar Synthetic Aperture Radar, Technology, Past and Future Applications to Archaeology The use of multispectral imagery and airborne synthetic aperture radar for the detection of archaeological sites and features in the western Maya wetlands of Chunchucmil, Yucatan, Mexico. Using SAR to Model Spatial Relationships among Mayan Groups on the Usumacinta River Site Detection Using Synthetic Aperture Radar on the Southern Channel Islands, California Section 3: Lidar   LIDAR Technology and Applications to Archaeology The Use of LIDAR at the Maya Site of Caracol, in Belize The Lake Patzcuraro Archaeology Project Section 4: Site Distribution Modelling and Detection Agent Based Modelling for Archaeological Landscapes as Reconstructed in Aerial and Satellite Remote Sensing Imagery Archaeological Site Pattern Analysis on San Clemente Island, California Statistical Advances for the Automated Detection of Archaeological Sites Detection of Archaeological Sites Using Merged Sensor Input from Airborne and Satellite Platforms On tomb detection and distribution modelling in Yemen/Oman Cultural Factors in Archaeological Predictive Modelling

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