Hidden remains

Last Updated: Saturday 04 July 2015

scientists have discovered new evidence of a prehistoric civilisation and remnants of ancient temples in Angkor, Cambodia. For this purpose, they have used highly detailed maps produced with data from an airborne imaging radar instrument created by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (nasa). Scientists say the finding was made possible by the Airborne Synthetic Aperture Radar.

Angkor is a vast complex of some 1,000 temples covering about 100 square miles of northern Cambodia. Little is known of the prehistoric occupation of this fertile flood plain, but at its height the city housed an estimated one million population. The famous temples were built from the eighth to thirteenth century and accompanied by a massive hydrological system of reservoirs and canals. Today, much of the civilisation of Angkor is hidden beneath a dense forest canopy.

Elizabeth Moore, head of the Art and Archaeology Department at the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London, says that the radar data have helped detect a distribution of circular 'prehistoric' mounds and undocumented temples far to the northwest of Angkor.

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