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Durham University

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Publication details for Professor John Wainwright

Kalayci, T., Lasaponara, R., Wainwright, J. & Masini, N. (2019). Multispectral Contrast of Archaeological Features: A Quantitative Evaluation. Remote Sensing 11(9): 913.

Author(s) from Durham


This study provides an evaluation of spectral responses of hollow ways in Upper
Mesopotamia. Hollow ways were used for the transportation of animals, carts, and other moving
agents for centuries. The aim is to show how the success of spectral indices varies in describing
topologically simple features even in a seemingly homogeneous geographic unit. The variation
is further highlighted under the changing precipitation regime. The methodology begins with
an exploration of the relationship between the date of a multispectral scene and the visibility of
hollow ways. The next step is to evaluate the impact of rainfall levels on numerous indices and to
quantify spectral contrast. The contrast between a hollow way and its background is evaluated with
Welch’s t-test and the association between precipitation regime and spectral responses of hollow
ways are investigated with Correspondence Analysis and Fisher’s test. Results highlight an intrinsic
relationship between the precipitation regime and the ways in which archaeological features reflects
and/or emits electromagnetic energy. Next, the categorization of spectral indices based on di erent
rainfall levels can be used as a guidance in future studies. Finally, the study suggests contrast becomes
an even more fruitful concept as one moves from the spatial domain to the spectral domain.