Ground Penetrating Radar

The first peer-reviewed scientific journal dedicated to GPR

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ISSN 2533-3100

Ground Penetrating Radar 2018, Volume 1, Issue 1, GPR-1-1-2,  https://doi.org/10.26376/GPR2018002


Ground Penetrating Radar investigations in sites of cultural interest in Malta

Raffaele Persico, Sebastiano D’Amico, Enzo Rizzo, Luigi Capozzoli, and Aaron Micallef


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Abstract:   This paper presents the results of a series of geophysical surveys carried out in Malta. In particular, we used a reconfigurable stepped-frequency Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) prototype to inspect the Argotti Garden in Floriana, looking for ancient buried cisterns, and the floor of the Nymphaeum inside the garden, to assess its conditions prior to restoration works. We subsequently used a commercial pulsed GPR system to assess the walls of the co-cathedral of St. John, in Valletta, and the walls of a building of the University of Malta, in Msida. All measurements were performed during a Short-Term Scientific Mission (STSM) funded by the COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology) Action TU1208 “Civil engineering applications of Ground Penetrating Radar.” Of course the work performed during the STSM consisted also in the processing and interpretation of the gathered data.


Keywords:  Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR); cultural heritage; detection of buried structures; inspection of walls; estimation of propagation velocity and relative permittivity.


Introduction

A Short-Term Scientific-Mission (STMS) entitled “Integrated geophysical investigations of sites of cultural interest in Malta” was recently funded by COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology), in the framework of the COST Action TU1208 “Civil engineering applications of Ground Penetrating Radar.” Raffaele Persico, Luigi Capozzoli and Enzo Rizzo visited Sebastiano D’Amico and Aaron Micallef in Malta, from March 5th to March 18th, 2017, and they jointly investigated a series of sites of cultural interest.

The initial plan was to survey the following archaeological and historical sites: the Argotti Botanical Garden in Floriana and the Nymphaeum inside the garden, the co-cathedral of St. John in Valletta, and the Palace de la Salle, still in Valletta. In the latter site, the degradation of frescoes did not allow performing the scheduled investigations. Some results obtained in the co-cathedral of St John, where a few walls were investigated, looked rather obscure and difficult to be interpreted; for comparison purposes, further tests were performed on similar walls in the University of Malta, in Msida. The walls of the co-cathedral and those of the university building were both nominally made of globigerina. Therefore, although we could not perform the planned measurements in the Palace de la Salle, we dealt with the inspection of the walls in the university, which was not initially scheduled, and the total number of case studies did not change. In this paper, all results obtained during the STSM are presented. The work performed during the STSM consisted also in the processing of the recorded data and their interpretation.

In the Argotti Botanical Garden (Section 2), four Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) profiles (B-Scans) were collected by using a stepped-frequency reconfigurable GPR prototype. Additionally, we processed and interpreted some data previously gathered in the same garden, by a different team, by using a commercial pulsed GPR system. In the Nymphaeum and its surroundings (Section 3), a grid of short GPR profiles was acquired by using the stepped-frequency reconfigurable GPR prototype.

We collected five GPR profiles on the walls of the co-cathedral of St. John in Valletta (Section 4) and sixteen GPR profiles on the walls of the University of Malta, in Msida (Section 5).


References

[1] R. Persico and S. D’Amico, “Use of Ground Penetrating Radar and standard geophysical methods to explore the subsurface,” Ground Penetrating Radar, vol. 1(1), pp. 1-37, 2018, doi.org/10.26376/GPR2018001.

[2] R. Persico, D. Dei, F. Parrini, and L. Matera, "Mitigation of narrow band interferences by means of a reconfigurable stepped frequency GPR system," Radio Science, pp. 1322–1331, 2016, doi.org/10.1002/2016RS005986.

[3] R. Persico and G. Leucci, "Interference Mitigation Achieved with a Reconfigurable Stepped Frequency GPR System," Remote Sensing, vol. 8(11), pp. 926–936, 2016, doi.org/10.3390/rs8110926.

[4] R. Persico, Introduction to Ground Penetrating Radar: Inverse Scattering and Data Processing, Wiley, 2014.


Share & Cite this article

Unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium of this article is permitted, provided the original article is properly cited. Please cite this article as follows: R. Persico and S. D'Amico, "Ground Penetrating Radar investigations in sites of cultural interest in Malta," Ground Penetrating Radar, Volume 1, No. 1, Article ID GPR-1-1-2, pp. 38-61, January 2018, doi: 10.26376/GPR2018002.


Read further papers published by the same Authors on Ground Penetrating Radar

Luigi Capozzoli:

- R. Persico, S. D’Amico, E. Rizzo, L. Capozzoli, and A. Micallef, “Electrical resistivity tomography investigations in Mgarr (Malta),” Ground Penetrating Radar, Volume 1, No. 1, Article ID GPR-1-1-3, pp. 63–74, January 2018, doi.org/10.26376/GPR2018003. [Retracted]

Sebastiano D'Amico: 

- R. Persico and S. D'Amico, "Use of Ground Penetrating Radar and standard geophysical methods to explore the subsurface," Ground Penetrating Radar, Volume 1, No. 1, Article ID GPR-1-1-1, pp. 1-37, January 2018, doi: doi.org/10.26376/GPR2018001.

- R. Persico, S. D’Amico, E. Rizzo, L. Capozzoli, and A. Micallef, “Electrical resistivity tomography investigations in Mgarr (Malta),” Ground Penetrating Radar, Volume 1, No. 1, Article ID GPR-1-1-3, pp. 63–74, January 2018, doi.org/10.26376/GPR2018003. [Retracted]

Aaron Micallef:

- R. Persico, S. D’Amico, E. Rizzo, L. Capozzoli, and A. Micallef, “Electrical resistivity tomography investigations in Mgarr (Malta),” Ground Penetrating Radar, Volume 1, No. 1, Article ID GPR-1-1-3, pp. 63–74, January 2018, doi.org/10.26376/GPR2018003. [Retracted]

Raffaele Persico:

- R. Persico and S. D'Amico, "Use of Ground Penetrating Radar and standard geophysical methods to explore the subsurface," Ground Penetrating Radar, Volume 1, No. 1, Article ID GPR-1-1-1, pp. 1-37, January 2018, doi: doi.org/10.26376/GPR2018001.

- R. Persico, S. D’Amico, E. Rizzo, L. Capozzoli, and A. Micallef, “Electrical resistivity tomography investigations in Mgarr (Malta),” Ground Penetrating Radar, Volume 1, No. 1, Article ID GPR-1-1-3, pp. 63–74, January 2018, doi.org/10.26376/GPR2018003. [Retracted]

Enzo Rizzo:

- R. Persico, S. D’Amico, E. Rizzo, L. Capozzoli, and A. Micallef, “Electrical resistivity tomography investigations in Mgarr (Malta),” Ground Penetrating Radar, Volume 1, No. 1, Article ID GPR-1-1-3, pp. 63–74, January 2018, doi.org/10.26376/GPR2018003. [Retracted]


Citations

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