Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Ancient Roman Burial Site and Radiology

CT: A New Nondestructive Method for Visualizing and Characterizing Ancient Roman Glass Fragments in Situ in Blocks of Soil By Roel J. Jansen et al.
Reference-RadioGraphics 2006;26:1837-1844
"A rare, complete ancient Roman burial site was discovered near the Dutch village of Bocholtz. In addition to many preserved grave offerings, there were countless fragments of deteriorated glass objects still buried in the ground. This glass was in very poor condition, however, and there was no possibility of excavating it directly. Instead, archeologists working at the site decided to dig up blocks of soil containing the glass fragments. High-resolution spiral computed tomography (CT) with multiplanar reformation, shaded-surface-display rendering, and volume rendering was used to obtain detailed information about the position, number, and form of the deteriorated glass fragments. CT-guided removal of the soil made it possible to restore some of the objects excavated from the blocks. In five of the 14 excavated objects, a correct Isings classification could be made based on the CT findings. In addition, CT was very important for the reconstruction of the layout of the burial chamber, the compilation of a list of grave contents, and the positioning of these contents within the chamber."

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