Evaluation of Van Khan Toorils castle, an archaeological site in Mongolia, by Ground Penetrating Radar

Tseedulam Khuut, Motoyuki Sato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We report an implementation of the Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) survey at a site that corresponds to a ruined castle. The objective of the survey was to characterise buried archaeological structures such as walls and tiles in Van Khan Tooril's Ruin, Mongolia, by 2D and 3D GPR techniques. GPR datasets were acquired in an area 10m by 9m, with 10cm line spacing. Two datasets were collected, using GPR with 500MHz and 800MHz frequency antennas. In this paper, we report the use of instantaneous parameters to detect archaeological targets such as tile, brick, and masonry by polarimetric GPR. Radar polarimetry is an advanced technology for extraction of target scattering characteristics. It gives us much more information about the size, shape, orientation, and surface condition of radar targets. We focused our interpretation on the strongest reflections. The image is enhanced by the use of instantaneous parameters. Judging by the shape and the width of the reflections, it is clear that moderate to high intensity response in instantaneous amplitude corresponds to brick and tiles. The instantaneous phase map gave information about the location of the targets, which appeared as discontinuities in the signal. In order to increase our ability to interpret these archaeological targets, we compared the GPR datasets acquired in two orthogonal survey directions. A good correlation is observed for the alignments of reflections when we compare the two datasets. However, more reflections appear in the north-south survey direction than in the west-east direction. This is due to the electric field orientation, which is in the horizontal plane for north-south survey directions and the horizontally polarised component of the backscattered high energy is recorded.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-76
Number of pages8
JournalExploration Geophysics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • 3D visualisation.
  • Archaeological survey
  • GPR polarimetry
  • Instantaneous amplitude
  • Instantaneous phase
  • Polarimetry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Geology


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