The Use of Ground Penetrating Radar in Archaeological Site Assessment

While archaeology is the study of ancient civilizations, it is using more of today’s technology to uncover secrets from the past. Whether discovering the fossilized remains of a dinosaur or exploring the ruins of an ancient city, ground penetrating radar is helping scientists accomplish more than they ever imagined. Since one of the most important aspects of archaeology is examining artifacts in a non-invasive manner, GPR has quickly become one of the key tools used by explorers at any site.

Excavation Planning and GPR

Since exploring a site may take years of painstaking work by scientists, ground penetrating radar is being used in various ways to make sure the process is done as accurately and safely as possible. One of its more popular ways of being used involves excavation planning. Once it’s been determined that a site contains artifacts or remains, ground penetrating radar can be used to help archaeologists and other scientists map the area and plan their excavation to ensure they get the results they expect. Parameters can be established, the area can be secured, and digging can begin in a manner that lets scientists retrieve items in an efficient and reliable way. Along with excavation planning, GPR is also very useful in archaeological site assessment. When scientists believe they have located an area that will produce the artifacts they have been searching for, GPR can provide a site assessment to indicate the presence of items underground as well as indicate any areas that may prove to be unsafe for digging.

Cemetery Mapping

One of the most important uses for ground penetrating radar involves cemetery mapping. When a team of scientists discover what they believe to be an ancient burial ground or a makeshift cemetery for slaves, soldiers, or others who have been long forgotten, remote sensing technology can assist them with locating graves and mapping out the size of the area. Not only can these discoveries provide tremendous amounts of historical information, but it can also at times bring peace of mind to families who have wondered about the fate of past relatives. In many instances, cemetery mapping has enabled historical groups to not only locate burial grounds, but also help them in their restoration efforts.

Locating Hidden Weapons

Particularly useful in areas where battles were known to have been fought, ground penetrating radar and remote sensing technology have been used to help archaeologists discover weapons from wars past. Being able to discover various weapons from World War II, the Civil War, or ancient battles from centuries ago have made GPR technology a vital part of the exploration process. In addition to locating weapons from past battles, ground penetrating radar finds itself being used more and more by law enforcement to discover weapons and other evidence that may have been hidden. What may have been hidden forever only years ago can now be tracked down and recovered, helping to bring those who commit crimes to justice. An example of how the modern investigative techniques of law enforcement can combine with archaeology, GPR is becoming more and more important in helping solve many mysteries.

Clandestine Graves

Along with cemetery mapping, GPR is also widely used to locate clandestine graves. Used primarily in law enforcement to locate crime victims, it has also been used in other scientific investigations. One of the most interesting and unusual instances involved its use by a team of explorers seeking to locate the hidden gravesite of a supposed alien who crash-landed a spacecraft in Aurora, Texas in 1897. As legend had it, the townspeople discovered the alien body and wasted little time burying it in the local graveyard, while the remnants of the spacecraft were dumped into a nearby well. Wood Inspection Services, after being asked by The History Channel show “UFO Hunters” to assist in the investigation, provided the latest remote sensing and ground penetrating radar in an effort to locate any remains. So whether it’s helping to locate something from this world or other parts of the universe, GPR technology is the method of choice for those attempting to put together pieces of a complicated puzzle.

Treasure Hunting

Of course, when it comes to finding something buried in the ground below, nothing gets people more excited than the prospect of finding buried treasure. Professional treasure hunters the world over have relied upon GPR technology from Wood Inspection Services to assist them in their quest for treasure of all kinds. Whether it’s a treasure buried by pirates hundreds of years ago or a trunk filled with silver and gold from a Wild West train robbery, GPR is always being used to find the next big haul of riches. Whatever you want to locate, contact us here at Wood Inspection Services today and we will be happy to assist you in any way possible.