Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Lost Colony Dig; Probing the Past with Radar


When doctors want to see a body's organs they use an magnetic resonance imaging machine (MRI) to view beautifully clear images of what's inside.

When archaeologists want to see what's below the surface of the earth they are now beginning to use a similar technology called computer-assisted radar tomography (CART).

An archaeologist with the First Colony Foundation was on site at Fort Raleigh Saturday with CART engineers testing the advanced ground penetrating system. Their hope is that CART will prove to be a viable tool to help find artifacts from Sir Walter Raleigh's 16th Century colonies in the future.

The First Colony Foundation comprises a team of top archaeologists who in recent years discovered the expanded Jamestown, Va. settlement. The group also is a partner with the National Park Service in search of the Elizabethan presence on Roanoke Island. It has dug its share of holes along Roanoke Sound the past couple of years.