With the help of a revolutionary new laser technology, archaeologists and scholars in Guatemala have discovered the ancient ruins of thousands of Mayan buildings that were hidden for centuries.
The tech, known as LiDAR (Light Detection And Ranging), allowed the team to digitally remove trees from a collection of aerial images of the area, revealing the incredible ancient settlement capable of housing 100,000 people.
“The LiDAR images make it clear that this entire region was a settlement system whose scale and population density had been grossly underestimated,” says Ithaca College archaeologist Thomas Garrison in an interview with National Geographic. “These features are so extensive that it makes us start to wonder: is this the breadbasket of the Maya lowlands?”
Image: National Geographic