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'Lost City' Uncovered in Cambodia

Laser sensors map out Mahendraparvata
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 15, 2013 7:25 AM CDT

(Newser) – Deep in the Cambodian jungle, Australian archaeologists have made a major discovery: a 1,200-year-old lost city, NPR reports. They made their find using laser sensors known as Lidar, which outlined the city, called Mahendraparvata. "With this instrument—bang—all of a sudden we saw an immediate picture of an entire city that no one knew existed," one of the archaeologists tells the Age. Atop a mountain, Mahendraparvata belonged to the Khmer Empire of southeast Asia, which dates between 800 and 1400 AD, NPR notes.

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Researchers then made their way to the site itself, using the Lidar data to navigate—along with help from an ex-Khmer Rouge soldier who lost a leg to landmines. The team discovered temple sites, signs of canals and roads, a cave full of ancient carvings, and a series of mounds that remain unexplained. "We are still trying to work out what these things were," says a researcher; tombs are one possibility. The Age has more. (Read more archaeology stories.)

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