Sunday, 8 May 2016

Personal notes from Tut conference yesterday

Many, many, many thanks to Nigel Fletcher-Jonesfor these live updates copied from his facebook timeline . Do you read them if you can, as the comments are excellent. 

... And we're off. El Damaty: recap based on Nick's paper. (September 2015) Found Plaster brushed on in parts of the burial chamber. Not the first time it was suggested that Nefertiti was buried in KV. But unlikely she was buried elsewhere than Amarna. Scan of three sides of burial chamber show something. IR thermography on north wall. Some differential but very low. New radar scan last month. Inconclusive results - too much noise. Need to continue and repeat radar scan and IR scan.

Nick: Nefertiti survived Akhenaten. Became pharaoh and buried in KV. Some Amarna evidence in KV. KV63 linked to Amarna period. Possibility of other chambers in KV62, possibly Nefertiti. Traces of precise vertical lines, not faults. Not a single tomb, like the second annex in the royal tomb at Amarna. Decoration of north wall similar to Amarna tombs. White ground on the north wall, not yellow. Female pharaonic figure? Mouth opening of Nefertiti as pharaoh by a young Tutankhamun. Second radar survey disappointing after the first survey. Further tests needed.

Dr. Watanabe: Back to my geophysical surveying roots for this one... November 2015 survey with ground penetrating radar (mounted sideways). Bit of an AV disaster, unfortunately. The first message is 'I've done this kind of thing all over the place, so...'. Uses high frequency pulse waves to detect anomalies. Images only indicate absence or presence, not actual shapes. Possible metallic compounds based on strong signals? Detected faults behind western wall. Straight lines of dots indicate something behind the West wall. Strong signals indicate metallic strips.

Dr. El Shayb: former director of CULTNAT now at Cairo University (civil engineer). Non-destructive / non-invasive techniques. Importance of calibration with regard to different types of underlying geology. Are the signals the same in sandstone, shale and limestone? We don't know. One survey says there are voids, the other says there are not. Need more scans including more IR and GPR. Plus impact echo techniques - using sound waves. Thorough 3D mapping and scanning from above the surface. Need control images from a known tomb. Possibly try it out on KV5.

Zahi: Not here to attack anyone, but this is inconclusive. The theory has become a fact. Carter didn't see anything at the time. Agreed that the tomb was planned for someone else. Nefertiti could not be buried in KV. The geological characteristics of the area around KV62 is well known and complex. The radar may be showing something else. Not possible to find tombs with radar. Need for the data to be available to the international community. Radar can't detect organic material. National Geographic survey showed no anomalies. A new chamber should be far more evident, particularly the door. Results not clear. Need more radar surveys. Need a committee to review data, and stop the media circus.

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