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The Schlumberger array - potential and pitfalls in archaeological prospection

By Christopher F. Gaffney and A. Aspinall


NoThe orientation-sensitive performance of the Schlumberger array, when used to survey narrow, linear features, has long been recognized in geophysical prospecting for geology. However, in spite of frequent use of the array for archaeological survey, particularly in eastern Europe and the Far East, this directional effect is not apparent in the survey of walls and ditches. In order to examine the array's performance some experiments were carried out in a shallow electrolytic tank using insulating and conducting cylinders. Broadside and longitudinal traverses with systematic expansion of the current electrode spacing facilitated the production of pseudosections. The results confirmed the high selectivity of the Schlumberger response to the orientation of the feature. Broadside traverse of the conductor and longitudinal traverse of the insulator produced very large changes: much smaller signals were recorded for the alternative orientations. A subsequent experiment, however, on a simulated ditch in bedrock revealed no signal. The directional effect for a linear insulator was confirmed in field studies of a simple stone-walled structure. Implications for survey of low-contrast linear archaeological features are discussed

Topics: Schlumberger Array, Shallow Tank, Linear Features, Orientation Selectivity, Field Example
Year: 2001
DOI identifier: 10.1002/arp.169
OAI identifier:
Provided by: Bradford Scholars
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