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DETECTING VARIOUS BURIAL SCENARIOS IN A CONTROLLED SETTING USING GROUND-PENETRATING RADAR AND CONDUCTIVITY

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Date Issued:
2010
Abstract/Description:
The use of geophysical tools to locate clandestine burials involving bodies has seen increasing popularity among forensic personnel. Often, these search methods are important to highlight certain areas where a body may or may not be located prior to utilizing invasive search techniques. Because of the success of these tools within real-life forensic searches, the use of controlled studies that monitor and detect cadavers over certain lengths of time have been increasingly utilized. However, these controlled studies have not monitored various burial scenarios that mimic real-life situations. This study focused on detecting and monitoring six burials containing pig carcasses used as proxies for human bodies and two control burials with a conductivity meter and ground-penetrating radar (GPR) with a 500-MHz and a 250-MHz antenna over a twelve month period. Each burial within this study represented a different forensic scenario that mimicked a real-life situation. Further, forensic use of GPR in both controlled settings as well as real-life searches have mainly focused on the use of a 500-MHz antenna. Therefore, this research also compared the use of a 250-MHz antenna with a 500-MHz antenna. Lastly, a number of GPR imagery options were utilized including reflection profiles and horizontal slices with various GPR software programs to compare the results obtained. Results obtained from the conductivity meter were compared to the results obtained by both antennae of the GPR. Overall, the use of multiple GPR imagery options provided increased resolution of the burial scenarios. Results showed that the conductivity meter was not a beneficial geophysical tool because none of the burial scenarios were detected. On the other hand, the use of GPR showed that the graves with objects added to the pig carcasses provided increased resolution compared to the graves containing only pig carcasses. Lastly, the 250-MHz antenna provided better resolution of the burial scenarios than the 500-MHz antenna due to easier discrimination of the forensic targets. Therefore, the use of a 250-MHz antenna would be a viable option to search for clandestine burials containing adult-sized bodies.
Title: DETECTING VARIOUS BURIAL SCENARIOS IN A CONTROLLED SETTING USING GROUND-PENETRATING RADAR AND CONDUCTIVITY.
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Name(s): Martin, Michael, Author
Schultz, John, Committee Chair
University of Central Florida, Degree Grantor
Type of Resource: text
Date Issued: 2010
Publisher: University of Central Florida
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: The use of geophysical tools to locate clandestine burials involving bodies has seen increasing popularity among forensic personnel. Often, these search methods are important to highlight certain areas where a body may or may not be located prior to utilizing invasive search techniques. Because of the success of these tools within real-life forensic searches, the use of controlled studies that monitor and detect cadavers over certain lengths of time have been increasingly utilized. However, these controlled studies have not monitored various burial scenarios that mimic real-life situations. This study focused on detecting and monitoring six burials containing pig carcasses used as proxies for human bodies and two control burials with a conductivity meter and ground-penetrating radar (GPR) with a 500-MHz and a 250-MHz antenna over a twelve month period. Each burial within this study represented a different forensic scenario that mimicked a real-life situation. Further, forensic use of GPR in both controlled settings as well as real-life searches have mainly focused on the use of a 500-MHz antenna. Therefore, this research also compared the use of a 250-MHz antenna with a 500-MHz antenna. Lastly, a number of GPR imagery options were utilized including reflection profiles and horizontal slices with various GPR software programs to compare the results obtained. Results obtained from the conductivity meter were compared to the results obtained by both antennae of the GPR. Overall, the use of multiple GPR imagery options provided increased resolution of the burial scenarios. Results showed that the conductivity meter was not a beneficial geophysical tool because none of the burial scenarios were detected. On the other hand, the use of GPR showed that the graves with objects added to the pig carcasses provided increased resolution compared to the graves containing only pig carcasses. Lastly, the 250-MHz antenna provided better resolution of the burial scenarios than the 500-MHz antenna due to easier discrimination of the forensic targets. Therefore, the use of a 250-MHz antenna would be a viable option to search for clandestine burials containing adult-sized bodies.
Identifier: CFE0003067 (IID), ucf:48325 (fedora)
Note(s): 2010-05-01
M.A.
Sciences, Department of Anthropology
Masters
This record was generated from author submitted information.
Subject(s): Forensic Archaeology
Controlled Research
Ground-Penetrating Radar
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/ucf/fd/CFE0003067
Restrictions on Access: public
Host Institution: UCF

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