Nalanda, the view from the sky

The Archaeological Survey of India is embarking on a project to survey the Nalanda University complex via satellite. Why is this getting some air time on SEAArch? Because there’s an exhibition going on about Buddhism in Asia at Singapore’s Asian Civilisations Museum, with Nalanda as the focal point.

Satellite survey of Nalanda ruins begins in Bihar
Nerve News, 20 December 2007

Officials of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), Patna circle, said Thursday a five-member team of scientists from the NRSA has begun a four-day GPR survey in Nalanda.

The GPR survey is being conducted for the first time in Bihar. GPR survey has proved beneficial across the world in exploration of archaeological structures.

The survey, whose main purpose is to locate ancient buried structures, would be conducted on two mounds – Garhpar and Rukministhan – located in the vicinity of Nalanda town, ASI sources said. The survey was launched Wednesday.

Say… this project reminds me a little of the mapping of Greater Angkor (one of the biggest pieces of archaeological news this year). I hope they publish the results of this study and the maps too.

You can read the attempt to satellite-map Nalanda University here.
Also, take a look at SEAArch’s review of the Buddhism in Asia exhibition at the Asian Civilisations Museum.

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Author: Noel Tan

Dr Noel Hidalgo Tan is the Senior Specialist in Archaeology at SEAMEO-SPAFA, the Southeast Asian Regional Centre for Archaelogy and Fine Arts.

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