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Satellite Images of Ancient Sites and Civilizations

Satellite images have become increasingly important tools for archaeologists, as these systems link information to precisely calibrated physical locations, and integrate information drawn from multiple sources. The usefulness of satellite images for identifying and analyzing ancient sites and civilizations was recognized from the early days of aviation and imagery is now available from an array of high resolution satellite sensors that provide even greater potential for investigating and mapping archaeological sites.

GeoEye-1 (0.5m) Satellite Image of Leptis Magna Roman Ruins, Al khums, Libya

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(Image credit: DigitalGlobe and Courtesy of Satellite Imaging Corporation)

satellite image leptis_magna roman ruins libya

Leptis Magna was a prominent city of the Roman Empire. Its ruins are located in Khoms, Libya, east of Tripoli, on the coast where the Wadi Lebda meets the sea. The site is one of the most spectacular and unspoiled Roman ruins in the Mediterranean. More information on Leptis Manga Roman Ruins, visit here.


IKONOS (1m) Satellite Image of Teotihuacan Pyramids, Mexico

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(Image credit: DigitalGlobe and Courtesy of Satellite Imaging Corporation)

"Space Imaging"

Rising 20 stories above the central Mexican highlands, the pyramids of Teotihuacan (pronounced tay-oh-tee-wah-con) were central to Toltec learning and culture. The city, about the size of ancient Athens and Rome, was abandoned about 1500 years ago. Some believe the city was attacked by an invading army, such as the Toltecs, while newer evidence points to an internal, class-based struggle.

Using an advanced understanding of mathematics, geometry and astronomy, the Toltecs built the largest pyramid, “The Pyramid of the Sun,” with an alignment to coincide with the two days (May 19th and July 25th) when the sun would be directly over the top of the pyramid at noon. This would also create an alignment to the east toward the rising sun and to the west for the setting sun. This pyramid has a base only 10 feet shorter on each side than the Great Pyramid of Cheops in Egypt. More information on Teotihuacan Pyramids, visit here.

QuickBird (0.6m) Satellite Image  of the Great Pyramids of Giza, Egypt

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Copyright © DigitalGlobe and Courtesy of Satellite Imaging Corporation. All rights reserved.

satellite image giza pyramids egypt

Pleiades (0.5m) Satellite Image of The Pyramids of Meroe in Sudan

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Copyright © AIRBUS and Courtesy of Satellite Imaging Corporation. All rights reserved.

satellite image pyramids of meroe sudan

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