Archaeology Magazine

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Drones Monitor Looted Bronze Age Sites in Jordan

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Jordan Drones Looting CHICAGO, ILLINOIS—For the past three years, archaeologists led by DePaul University's Morag M. Kersel have used drones or UAVs to monitor looting at the Early Bronze Age site of Fifa on Jordan's Dead Sea Plain. "Three seasons of monitoring at Fifa have demonstrated that UAVs can provide quantifiable evidence for the rate of ongoing site damage," said Kersel in a DePaul University press release. Their work shows that while looting at the site is ongoing, it is now continuing at a much reduced pace compared to when the project began. "An element of the ongoing research is the examination of why looting has abated," says Kersel. "Are there no more graves to loot? Have looters found more lucrative financial resources?" The team is now using ethnographic interviews with people in the area to understand why looting at the site may have slowed. To read more about archaeology in Jordan, go to "Neolithic Community Centers." 

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