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Archéologie, forêt et Lidar : une recherche qui a du relief ! Introduction

Abstract : The LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) technique allows a very fine restitution of the topography from a laser scanner on board an aircraft. For several years now, this technology has been making archaeological remains visible over square kilometers of forest areas that were previously invisible from the sky. The archaeological sites are reconstructed with their environment (roads, plots of land, agrarian structures, etc.) at scales that were previously difficult to analyze. This special issue provides us with an overview of French approaches to the archaeological exploitation of LiDAR without claiming, far from it, to be exhaustive, as there is so much work to be done, both in France and abroad. However, the range of articles gathered here reflects the diversity of current research, in terms of scales of work (site, forest massifs, region, etc.), LiDAR acquisition procedures (aircraft, drone), the fields of investigation (from the Aisne to the Allier, from the Vendee to the Vosges and as far as Mexico) or the periods and chronological ranges covered (from the long period of agrarian history to the short period of the Battle of Verdun). A number of methodological points are also covered in the course of the articles, concerning the processing of LiDAR data, the manual or semi-automatic interpretation of relief, field verification protocols, comparison with environmental data, etc. We hope that these insights will bear witness to this research which is full of relief (in every sense of the word) and will provide food for thought on the contributions of LiDAR to archaeological investigation in the forest, on the approaches to be developed to make good use of it, by working with digital data, but also, and always, with historical information and the reality of the field.
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Laurent Costa, Laure Laüt, Christophe Petit. Archéologie, forêt et Lidar : une recherche qui a du relief ! Introduction. Archéologies numériques, Openscience, 2020, 4 (1), pp.1-7. ⟨hal-02887375⟩

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