Thus the team decided to create an
excavation grid for the entire tell. Using a total station and
grid coordinates based on data provided by TDS Foresight--a computer
mapping program, the Berkeley team began to mark points on the tell
located exactly 50m apart from one another on a horizontal plane.
(left) Ginger Emery using total
station to locate grid points. (right) Topographic map generated in TDS
When a point had been accurately
located, team members drove a steel rod into the ground. This
rod was then encased in cement in order to guarantee that it would
remain fixed in place. Atop the cement was painted the names of
the four grid squares sharing a corner in that location. Because
of the difficult terrain, this process of locating and creating grid
points took nearly three weeks. But by the end of the 2003
season, the El Hibeh team had created a 50m grid oriented to true
north and consisting of no less than 42 individual markers throughout
Securing grid point in place with cement.
Grid points atop tell before
It is hoped that in future seasons the
Berkeley team will be able to quickly and easily determine their
approximate location anywhere on the tell. In addition, this
grid system will greatly simplify the process of record keeping--both
for archaeologists' reports and for the objects they uncover.
Furthermore, the process of marking out new areas for excavation will
be greatly simplified, allowing for a more efficient use of the teams
time in the field.
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