Ars Technica: Declassified photos from U2 planes are helping archaeologists unlock the past

Ars Technica: Declassified photos from U2 planes are helping archaeologists unlock the past. “During the 1950s and 1960s, US spy planes made regular flights across Europe, Central Asia, and the Middle East, photographing the terrain to track military targets. A chunk of the Middle Eastern photographs were declassified in 1997, and now those airborne images are helping archaeologists track changing features in the landscape that in many cases are no longer visible today, according to a new paper published in Advances in Archaeological Practice.”

Archaeological Institute of America: Launch of New Website for Cultural Property Protection Groups

Archaeological Institute of America: Launch of New Website for Cultural Property Protection Groups . “The new website of the Cultural Heritage by Archaeology and the Military Panel (CHAMP) is now active! CHAMP’s sister organization, Military Cultural Heritage Advisory Group (MilCHAG), is now sharing the website. MilCHAG has the same overall goal of protecting endangered cultural heritage, but the group focuses on directly helping military personnel plan, train, and operate to protect cultural property in areas in conflict.”

Al-Fanar Media: In Jordan, Antiquities Sites Enlist Nearby Communities as Partners

Al-Fanar Media: In Jordan, Antiquities Sites Enlist Nearby Communities as Partners. “A prominent theme among presentations scheduled for a major international conference on the archaeology of Jordan, being held in Florence, Italy, this month, is the growth of projects that engage local communities in the preservation of ancient sites.”

Ecns: Drones increasingly used to protect Great Wall

Ecns: Drones increasingly used to protect Great Wall. “The use of drones helps human inspectors gain a precise understanding of the preservation of the Great Wall at delicate levels and reveals more information on areas difficult for people to access. Yanqing has the most extensive Great Wall elements in the capital city as well as a complete preservation system. Authorities said drones, satellite images and other new technologies will provide the most comprehensive, accurate data on the Great Wall to create a digital archive platform.”

Ars Technica: Satellites watch over the graves of ancient steppe nomads

Ars Technica: Satellites watch over the graves of ancient steppe nomads. “University of Sydney archaeologist Gino Caspari and his colleagues searched for Scythian burial mounds, or kurgans, in high-resolution satellite images of a 110 square kilometer (68.4 square mile) area of the Xinjiang province in northwestern China. They mapped their findings and noted how many of the burial mounds looked like they’d been disturbed by looters. When looters dig up the contents of the grave pit, the center of the mound usually collapses. Observers who know what they’re looking for can spot that from above; imagine looking at a sheet of bubble wrap to see which ones have been popped. Although the satellite images weren’t as precise as a detailed ground survey, they offered a pretty accurate estimate of the general situation on the ground—and the news wasn’t good.”

Bloomberg: New Digital Archive Preserves Memories of London’s Greatest Archaeological Discovery

Bloomberg: New Digital Archive Preserves Memories of London’s Greatest Archaeological Discovery. “In 1954, the chance discovery of the remains of a Roman temple to the God Mithras in the rubble of post-war London captured public imagination, with tens of thousands of visitors flocking to the site to marvel at the remains. Today – one year after the restored temple was re-opened to the public at London Mithraeum Bloomberg SPACE – a new digital archive published by Bloomberg and MOLA (Museum of London Archaeology) invites the public to explore first-hand accounts of what it was like to be part of London’s greatest archaeological discovery.”

Ars Technica: Archaeologists reconstruct pre-Columbian temple with 3D-printed blocks

Ars Technica: Archaeologists reconstruct pre-Columbian temple with 3D-printed blocks. “The unfinished temple in a southern valley of the Lake Titicaca Basin in modern-day Bolivia has been a mystery for at least 500 years. Now known as the Pumapunku—’Door of the Jaguar’ in the Quechua language—the complex stone structure is part of a sprawling complex of pyramids, plazas, and platforms built by a pre-Columbian culture we now call the Tiwanaku. Construction began around 500 CE and proceeded off and on, in phases, over the next few centuries until the Tiwanaku left the site around 900 or 1000 CE.”