By combining the use of high tech tools and crowdsourcing, their small team of explorers, led by Albert Lin, turns into a team of thousands working together to identify possible tomb locations. This is done by having the general public studying satellite images and identifying the features we see. There’s no way the small team would have enough time to search the entire area themselves, so our help is invaluable. It’s amazing how helpful we can be without being experts on satellite imagery. It’s very easy to spot rivers and roads, and pretty intuitive to spot modern structures, such as yurts, and signs of ancient or buried structures, such as burial mounds or odd land patterns. Then, combining this information with real-time data and maps, the expedition gets a clearer picture of the different areas of Mongolia.
One reason why the explorer team is using satellite imagery techniques is to minimize the amount of digging that is done, which preserves Mongolia’s land and protects the cultural history. By studying the land from above, one can see subtle differences in terrain, perhaps areas that have settled in unusual ways. As possible heritage sites are located, people on the ground can investigate further. Explorer Albert Lin and his team will be investigating the tagged items, without digging any holes. Top Mongolian scholars are also participating in the process.