Airborne spectral imagery for archaeological prospection in grassland environments-an evaluation of performance
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The new generation of aerial photographers is using different wavelengths to sense archaeological features. This is effective but can be expensive. Here the authors use data already collected for environmental management purposes, and evaluate it for archaeological prospection on pasture. They explore the visibility of features in different seasons and their sensitivity to different wavelengths, using principal components analysis to seek out the best combinations. It turns out that this grassland gave up its secrets most readily in January, when nothing much was growing, and overall the method increased the number of known sites by a good margin. This study is of the greatest importance for developing the effective survey of the world's landscape, a quarter of which is under grass. © Antiquity Publications Ltd.