Space Archaeology | Sarah Parcak

Seventeen lost pyramids are among the buildings identified in a new satellite survey of Egypt. More than 1,000 tombs and 3,000 ancient settlements were also revealed by looking at infra-red images which show up underground buildings. Initial excavations have already confirmed some of the findings, including two suspected pyramids. The work has been pioneered at the University of Alabama at Birmingham by US Egyptologist Dr Sarah Parcak. An infra-red satellite image shows a buried pyramid, located in the centre of the highlight box. She says she was amazed at how much she and her team has found. “We were very intensely doing this research for over a year. I could see the data as it was emerging, but for me the “Aha!” moment was when I could step back and look at everything that we’d found and I couldn’t believe we could locate so many sites all over Egypt. “To excavate a pyramid is the dream of every archaeologist,” she said.  The team analysed images from satellites orbiting 700km above the earth, equipped with cameras so powerful they can pin-point objects less than 1m in diameter on the earth’s surface. Infra-red imaging was used to highlight different materials under the surface.


BBC “Egyptian pyramids found by infra-red satellite images”