Working Papers

  • How Nefertiti's Tomb Should Appear on Radar open

    This paper predicts what Nefertiti’s tomb should look like on radar, should it exist in substantially the form Nicholas Reeves theorizes.

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  • Simultaneous Transit and Pyramid Alignments: Were the Egyptians’ Errors in Their Stars or in Themselves? open

    In a 2000 paper in the journal Nature, Kate Spence captured the imagination of the Egyptological world by using the circumpolar stars to calculate the date upon which the Great Pyramid was commenced and showing how the Egyptians might have used those stars to align the pyramids of the Old Kingdom with due north. It has been nearly fifteen years since Spence published her theory. How well has it held up?

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  • Did the Egyptians Use the Sun to Align the Pyramids? open

    The Egyptians aligned pyramids of the fourth dynasty, including the Great Pyramid of Khufu and its neighbor, Khafre, to cardinal points with amazing accuracy. For the most part, scholars who have studied the issue have concluded that the Egyptians must have used the stars to achieve such accuracy. In this paper, I demonstrate that they could have achieved that accuracy using the sun.

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  • Where, Precisely, are the Three Pyramids of Giza? open

    Those wishing to study the monuments at Giza may be surprised to find out that there are few readily available maps fixing the locations of its three major pyramids to an accuracy of better than a meter. In this paper, I convert Flinders Petrie’s 1880-1 data into a modern coordinate system and combine Petrie’s data with more recent survey data to produce a map which locates the Pyramids of Giza with sub meter accuracy.

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  • How the Pyramid Builders May Have Found Their True North open

    The builders of the Great Pyramid of Khufu aligned the huge monument to true north to within six minutes of arc, or one tenth of a degree. How they managed to do that has long been debated. In this article we will examine four prominent theories, test one, and compare and contrast the others.

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  • New Angles on the Great Pyramid open

    In this article, we derive new estimates for the size and orientation of the Great Pyramid using data compiled by Mark Lehner and David Goodman in 1984. We can fix the locations of the casing corners to within ten centimeters. The Lehner/Goodman estimates for the location of the casing’s corners proved to be remarkably close to Flinders Petrie’s estimates.

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  • The Solar Alignments of Giza open

    In this paper, we identify those places on the Giza plateau where the Egyptians might have observed the solstices. Our goal was to test the hypothesis that Giza might have functioned not only as a funerary complex to serve the dead king, but also to serve the living Egyptians as a platform for observing the solstices.

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  • North By Northwest: The Strange Case of Giza's Misalignments open

    The Giza Pyramids are aligned to cardinal points with uncanny accuracy. But many of Giza’s other monuments share a strange, systematic alignment error; they are rotated a few degrees counterclockwise from cardinal points. In this paper, we explore the possibility that the errors were due to the use of the solar gnomon method by the Egyptians to orient many of their structures. The method works precisely only when it used over level ground. The ground at Giza slopes from west to east and that may account for the systematic alignment errors.

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  • The 2006 Geophysical Season at Giza open

    In 2006, the Glen Dash Foundation, in cooperation with Ancient Egypt Research Associates (AERA), conducted a ground penetrating radar survey over selected areas of the Giza Plateau. This report details the findings from that survey.

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  • How Deep Can We See? The Depth Penetrating Characteristics of Ground Penetrating Radar open

    In 2001, Professors Kathryn Bard of Boston University and Rodolfo Fattovich of University of Naples “L’Orientale” (UNO) began their excavations at Mersa/Wadi Gawasis. In 2004, Kathryn Bard punched through a layer of overburden on the western side of a coral terrace, discovering the first of seven known caves, several of them containing cedar ship timbers and fiber ropes in a remarkable state of preservation. In 2005, the Glen Dash Foundation began a series of remote sensing surveys to find additional caves. During our 2005-2006 geophysical season we measured soil properties with electromagnetic induction tools. We employed numerical models to predict absorption losses and determined that ground penetrating radar could be used to locate additional caves. In 2006-2007, we conducted a radar survey and found that we could detect the caves despite their being more than six meters below the surface.

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