UAVs (drones) in Archaeology – Gai Jorayev

Many thanks to Gai Jorayev for giving the first ‘Off the Record’ seminar of the term in which he explored the use of UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles, ‘drones’) in Archaeology.

DSC05831_2_ed - G Jorayev

Gai described the use of UAVs in a wide range of projects in the Institute, including the Ancient Merv Project and in Olduvai Gorge (Tanzania), as well as in Archaeology South-East projects, with stunning images, 3D models and aerial footage demonstrating the importance of this technology for mapping, photogrammetric recording and heritage management. The value of UAVs in public engagement, both when in use and in producing such compelling results, was also clear.

DSC00692 _ed - G Jorayev

Gai described how the development in recent years of not only the UAVs themselves but also camera technology and software have pushed forward what is now possible, and how this has also been enhanced by skills and experience built up by using a range of equipment, software and techniques in varied locations and through experimentation. He also discussed the issues of processing the large quantities of data produced, as well as working in challenging terrain.

Thanks again to Gai for discussing the opportunities and challenges of this fascinating and rapidly-developing field!

A reminder that next Wednesday, 18th October, Tommaso Mattioli (University of Barcelona) and Margarita Díaz-Andreu (ICREA and University of Barcelona) will be giving a seminar, 5-6pm in room 209:

Intangible landscapes: measuring the acoustics of rock art sites in the Central and Western Mediterranean

For some time researchers have pointed out that, in addition to the visual, other senses may explain the production and location of rock art in prehistoric landscapes. Among all the senses, an increasing attention is being paid to hearing, but measuring acoustics has proved to be a challenge. Rock art researchers usually work in remote, open-air environments in which the equipment usually employed by acoustical engineers and architects is not adequate. In this talk we will discuss how we were able to overcome this and other difficulties in the case of our examination of rock art landscapes in the Central and Western Mediterranean.

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