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Enhancing signals from buried Roman structures in Magnetometer data by combining continuous wavelet transform and tensor voting

: Jungmann, M.; Dolenz, H.; Clauser, C.; Berlage, T.


Archaeological prospection 24 (2017), No.4, pp.395-411
ISSN: 1075-2196
ISSN: 1099-0763
Journal Article
Fraunhofer FIT ()

In this paper, a processing chain is proposed for enhancing larger‐scale building structures in magnetometer data using the continuous wavelet transform for extracting the horizontal location, depth, and homogeneity (or shape) of subsurface objects. Even though the values estimated from our data do not clearly describe the archaeological site, they are used as a filter step for removing objects whose depth and homogeneity fall outside a predefined range. This yields a binary map, where valid points represent the horizontal source positions of magnetic anomalies. In a second step, curvilinear subsets of points are identified on a larger scale by the tensor voting framework indicating archaeological relevant structures, such as arcs and lines. Here, a point casts votes on neighbouring points and their values depend on the distance, and relative position of the points. All votes are summed up and the final value discriminates, whether a certain point (and therefore a magnetic source) is part of a salient curve (e.g. arc, line). Thresholding removes points with lower values while keeping those with larger values. Although the result shows many geometric features, it still needs to be combined with other data, e.g. from aerial photography or excavations. In combination, the extracted features continue those structures in the aerial photograph, thus expanding the knowledge about the archaeological site.