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Non-destructive Archeaology

Since 2002, parallel to the excavation and conservation works, an archaeological survey conducted with the use of nondestructive methods was also carried out in Ptolemais. Our main target was the processing of collected data (measurement points, maps, images, field databases) in order to construct a GIS (Geographical Information System) model, based on the AutoCAD software.The Digital Model of the entire ancient city of Ptolemais was systematically enlarged with new data gathered during each campaign.

This allowed us to solve important problems concerning the layout of the city grid in the main historic periods (Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine).

The main nondestructive methods applied in Ptolemais are the following:

1. Precise topographical measurements with the use of the Total Station and GPS RTK systems allowed us to record all well preserved in situ and visible on the surface stone blocks.

2. The analysis of the satellite images (including the near infra red channel) provided answers concerning the humidity of the subsurface layers.

3. Aerial photographs from short and middle high distances were executed with the use of a photo-kite with a perpendicular and oblique positioning system of the digital camera.

4. Geophysical Prospection (such as magnetic survey) informed us about underground architecture features, invisible on the surface. Electrical measurements illustrated the depth of structures and their state of preservation (e.g. foundations, walls, pavements, hydraulic installations, kilns etc.).