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31 May 2010

Application of Geo-Informatics to the Study of the Royal Road from Angkor to Phimai

Kyoto University Research Information Repository 
Center for Southeast Asian Studies 
Southeast Asian Studies  Vol.46 No.4

File: 460405.pdf, 2.13 MB, Adobe PDF
Title: Application of Geo-Informatics to the Study of the Royal Road from Angkor to Phimai
Authors: Lertlum, Surat & Shibayama, Mamoru

area study
remote sensing and GIS
royal road

Issue Date: 
Journal title: 
Volume: 46 Issue: 4
Start page: 547 End page: 563

[...] In this project, archaeological and anthropological knowledge was used together with geo-informatics, information and geo-physics technologies to identify, pinpoint and study the ancient road from Angkor in Cambodia to Phimai in Thailand that is described in the inscription of the Pra Khan temple in Angkor, Cambodia.
Application of geo-informatics to this project revealed the following results:
(1) Application of GIS/RS confirmed the hypothesis proposed by archaeologists based on the Pra Khan inscription that an ancient road once ran from Angkor in Siem Reap area of Cambodia to Phimai in Nakorn Ratchasima, Thailand. In particular, parts of the ancient road were clearly recognized by analyzing the archaeological sites found standing along a line on satellite images and aerial photographs.
(2) Buildings and facilities related with the ancient road, such as ancient bridges, ancient industry sites, and dharmshalas (rest-house chapels), were newly discovered through the same analysis.
(3) Predictions and assumptions derived from RS/GIS methodologies were verified by field surveys conducted by specialists in archaeology, anthropology, and informatics. In other words, RS/GIS methodologies also could be used to decide an area of field survey in advance. [...] This paper describes the role and significance of geo-informatics in the study of the royal road from Angkor to Phimai, presents new findings obtained from application of geo-informatics in archaeological studies, describes how GIS/RS technologies were applied, and discusses effectiveness of applying the satellite image ASTER1) and SRTM2) elevation data in the project.

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