Geographic Information System (GIS)
The ARCGIS suite (especially ArcMap, Spatial Analyst, ArcScene), ESRI’s cloud-based GIS application (AGOL), and ESRI’s Collector, Survey123 and Tracker apps, along with Trimble survey-grade GPS, are used for data logging and analysis. Thanks to significant preparatory work since 2016, KASP’s GIS contains a multitude of geospatial data to guide our first field campaign: satellite, LIDAR and airborne aerial data (2018 and historical, dating back to the 1940s), antique and historical maps, the Greek Army and IGME maps, known archaeological sites extracted from analog materials, predefined areas of interest, surveyable 2019 tracts with corresponding collection cells, cultivation zones, tract accessibility etc.
Remote sensing is well underway and will be completed in the Spring of 2019. In the direction of planning, we are currently using remotely sensed data to refine our site-specific survey strategy (e.g. size and shape of field walking units, arrangement and density of field walking tracts, identification of off-limits areas etc.), to identify areas of high interest, and to understand the various dimensions of landscape (building material availability, soil quality, water availability, route accessibility etc.). This will not only ensure the quality of results (data collection and interpretation), but it also directly translates into the elimination of time spent unproductively on the ground. Secondly, in the direction of interpretation and synthesis, we are currently incorporating these results in the GIS where they can be compared with other types of spatial information so that we may have as much information as possible while in the field.
Geology and geomorphology
A geological survey is planned ahead of the collection. We also use Optically Stimulated Luminescence (OSL) to date agricultural terrace systems and other earthworks in the survey area. We capitalize on new opportunities furnished by the combination of single aliquot regenerative dose-OSL (SAR-OSL) methods, including small aliquot and single grain analysis, coupled with luminescence methods. In addition to the OSL, we undertake a suite of environmental radioactivity measurements by in situ gamma spectrometry in the field, ICP-MS analyses of the profiling and dating samples, and lab high-resolution gamma spectrometry in the lab.
The main strategy is pedestrian observation and artifact collection using the siteless survey model. The main target parameters for the survey are artifact density, spatial distribution and clustering by era, as these will give us a good impression of the extent and density of habitation across the area of interest diachronically. Landscape units are determined based on natural tracts created by the topography, roads, property boundaries and vegetation zones. A tesselated grid of 400m2 hexagons (with cells spatially equivalent to 20 x 20 m cells) is nested within the tracts to achieve optimal fit with tract shapes and fewer edge effects. Data collection is entirely digital via a cloud-based GIS app on Samsung Active 2 tablets equipped with Trimble R1 units for seamless integration with ESRI’s software. Additional sampling strategies will be utilized based on sampling and terrain needs (nested sampling with 200m2 cells, linear forays in largely inaccessible areas, grabs, etc.). Since the extent of the survey is small (1.5 km2 in the first year, 2 km2 in the second year), the hexagonal cells (rather than side by side survey) are directly used for total collection (minus tiles and modern objects which are tallied using clickers). All finds are kept for later processing and study in the museum of Oropos.
While the final choice of techniques will be made in the field depending on local conditions of the areas of interest, we plan to survey topsoil magnetic susceptibility, followed by magnetometry survey at an interval or 0.25 x 0.5 m or 0.5 x 0.5 m in order to detect areas affected by fire, sunken features and possible road tracks. Resistance mapping will be carried out at a resolution of 1 x 1 m and if necessary at 0.5 x 0.5 m for clarification. GPR will be employed at an interval of 0.05 x 1 m, or 0.05 x 0.5, or 0.05 x 0.25 m to detect void spaces.