Using Multispectral Drone Imagery for Identification of Prehispanic Agricultural Features

Author(s): Gabriela Ore Menendez; Steven A. Wernke

Year: 2018


In recent years, the use of multispectral satellite imagery has become an increasingly viable option for archaeological site detection and classification. Nevertheless, the high costs and relatively low resolution of multispectral data present challenges for local-scale archaeological feature detection. In this presentation, we will examine the advantages and limitations of using UAV aerial multispectral imagery as a means of local-scale feature detection. We compare results of remote sensing classification techniques on multispectral satellite imagery (at ~ 2m resolution) and results from drone-based multispectral imagery (at sub-decimeter resolution) of the same area. We map and classify the agricultural landscape (prehispanic and early colonial agricultural terraces, canals, and paths) in a 5 square kilometer area in the region of Huarochirí of the Peruvian highlands. We evaluate the potential to use the UAV-derived multispectral imagery as a "near ground truth" source for informing the execution and interpretation of satellite imagery-based classification schema and feature detection. We also explore the utility of the combined use of UAV- and satellite-based multispectral imagery for improving the efficacy of pedestrian survey, especially in areas of high topographic relief as in the highland Andes.

Cite this Record

Using Multispectral Drone Imagery for Identification of Prehispanic Agricultural Features. Gabriela Ore Menendez, Steven A. Wernke. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 443376)

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Spatial Coverage

min long: -82.441; min lat: -56.17 ; max long: -64.863; max lat: 16.636 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 22059