Thursday, 5 July 2012

Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition 2012: Drowned Landscapes

A virtual visualisation of an Agent Based model of life in
the Mesolithic on the Doggerbank.
Credit: Dr. Eugene Ch'ng, University of Birmingham
An exhibit proposed by Dr Richard Bates of the Department of Earth Sciences, Europe’s Lost World: The Drowned Landscapes of the North Sea, will form part of the 2012 Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition in London, 3–8 July 2012. The exhibit is a joint venture with scientists at the University of Birmingham, the University of Wales Trinity St David and the University of Aberdeen.  

After the end of the last Ice Age extensive landscapes that had once been home to thousands of people were inundated by the sea. This exhibit explores those drowned landscapes around the UK and shows how they are being rediscovered through pioneering scientific research. It reveals their human story through the artefacts left by the people - a story of a dramatic past that featured lost lands, devastating tsunamis and massive climate change.
The exhibit follows a number of successful geophysical archaeology projects sponsored by NERC, English Heritage, HistoricScotland, The Crown Estates and Aggregate Industries that have mapped the now submerged palaeo-landscapes known as Doggerland. Scientists have coupled geophysical survey techniques developed by the oil industry with 3D visualisation technologies developed by the computer modelling industry to recreat these once inhabited landscapes, mapping rivers, lakes, hills, coastlines and estuaries, and to model the flora and fauna associated with them. These models bring back to life the homeland of the Mesolithic populations that once lived there. [related blog] [press release] [more]