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Paper No. 7
Presentation Time: 8:00 AM-6:00 PM


WILLIAMS, Caitlyn M., Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of Tennessee, EPS, 1412 Circle Drive, Knoxville, TN 37996-1410, BAKER, Gregory S., Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of Tennessee, 1412 Circle Drive, Knoxville, TN 37996-1410 and AULT, Bradley A., Classics, University at Buffalo, SUNY, 338 Millard Fillmore Academic Complex, Buffalo, NY 14260,

Conventional archaeological excavation methods are, by nature, extremely invasive and result in study areas being irrevocably altered for the sake of research. For this reason, near-surface geophysical techniques have been incorporated into archaeological investigations to aid in determining the locations of expected targets (i.e. buried features) with minimal damage to the site. Noninvasive techniques are particularly important when the site being investigated lies within an area where it is difficult for archaeologists to justify excavations, usually due to limited knowledge of possible subsurface features and restricted availability of resources. The objective of this research is to perform a geophysical survey at an archaeological site on the Akrotiri Peninsula in Cyprus to locate evidence of a Roman naval base that was in use between the 4th and 7th centuries CE.

Areas of interest were identified by an on-site archaeologist, determining three separate locations to be surveyed using both ground penetrating radar (GPR) and magnetic gradiometry. Site boundaries were chosen by the archaeologist, as well as the presence of natural obstacles (bushes, protruding rock etc.). Data collection was completed with transects running perpendicular to the predicted orientation of features. A total of fifty-two, 10m by 10m grids were surveyed using both geophysical techniques. Data from each site was processed at a later date using ArcheoSurveyor (magnetic gradiometry) and GeoSoft (GPR) in order to create maps of the study sites for later use by archaeologists. Two of the sites yielded significant results, as many subsurface structures were detected in spite of little or no surface evidence. Future work will focus on creating a workflow in which geophysical surveys can be expedited, providing the archaeologist with on-site GPS-enabled feedback to further direct the data collection stages of each project.

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