Mapeo de asentamientos en alta resolución con sistemas aéreos no tripulados en Altar de Sacrificios, Guatemala

Abstract: Over the last decade, the use of lidar has dramatically changed our understanding of the size and extent of ancient settlements in the Maya lowlands. This technology, however, has yielded equivocal results in secondary-forest growth and recently deforested environments. In these settings, unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) surveys facilitate a more effective and efficient methodology for generating high-resolution imagery to identify features of archaeological interest. In this paper, we present the results of a UAV survey conducted in a 20 km2 study area surrounding the site of Altar de Sacrificios in southwest Petén, Guatemala. Previous research at this site suggested that Altar was a secondary center with a modest-sized ceremonial core, but limited exploration of the surrounding settlement left questions about its sustaining population. Results from our recent UAV survey and total-station mapping have documented a low-density and dispersed settlement along the Pasión, Salinas, and Usumacinta rivers. Fifty new mounds, ranging in height from lass than 1 m to over 10 m, have been identified and documented using ground-truthing methods, while more than ninety additional mounds await confirmation with future surveys. The high-resolution digital elevation model generated from UAV images also captures geomorphologial features that help us interpret the relationship between the ancient settlement and relic river courses. This paper addresses the implications of these results and highlights the application of UAV survey methodology in the Maya lowlands. Cite as: Munson, Jessica L., Mejía Ramón, Andrés G., and Paiz Aragón, Lorena, (2019). Mapeo de asentamientos en alta resolución con sistemas aéreos no tripulados en Altar de Sacrificios, Guatemala. In XXXII Simposio de Investigaciónes Arqueológicas en Guatemala, Tomo 2, edited by Barbara Arroyo, Luis Méndez Salinas and Gloria Ajú Álvarez, pp. 637-648. Museo Nacional de Arqueología y Etnología, Ciudad de Guatemala. DOI:10.26207/5xhm-9009



Work Title Mapeo de asentamientos en alta resolución con sistemas aéreos no tripulados en Altar de Sacrificios, Guatemala
Subtitle Jessica L. Munson, Andrés G. Mejía Ramón, and Lorena Paiz Aragón
Open Access
  1. Andrés G. Mejía Ramón
  2. Jessica L. Munson
  3. Lorena Paiz Aragón
  1. Survey
  2. Archaeology
  3. Remote Sensing
  4. Altar de Sacrificios
  5. Maya
License CC BY-NC 4.0 (Attribution-NonCommercial)
Work Type Part Of Book
  1. Jessica L. Munson
  2. Lorena Paiz Aragón
  3. Andrés G. Mejía Ramón
  1. Museo Nacional de Arqueología y Etnología
Publication Date 2019
  1. Archaeology--Remote sensing
  1. Spanish
DOI doi:10.26207/5xhm-9009
Geographic Area
  1. Las Cruces, Petén, Guatemala
  2. Sayaxché, Petén, Guatemala
  1. XXXII Simposio de Investigaciones Arqueológicas en Guatemala, Tomo 2, pp. 637-648
Deposited September 02, 2019




This resource is currently not in any collection.

Work History

Version 1

  • Created
  • Added Munson__Mejia_Ramon__Paiz_Aragon_-_2019_-_Mapeo_de_Asentamientos_en_Alta_Resolucion_con_Sistemas_Aereos_No_Tripulados_en_Altar_de_Sacrificios__Guatemala.pdf
  • Added Creator Andrés G. Mejía Ramón
  • Added Creator Jessica L. Munson
  • Added Creator Lorena Paiz Aragón
  • Published
  • Updated
  • Updated
  • Updated