In the southern area of the Ferrara District, Italy, remote sensing investigations associated with geo-archaeological drilling in underwater archaeological studies, have helped to broad our understanding of the historical evolution and cultural heritage of inland waterways. In working on prototype sites, we have taken a multidisciplinary approach of surveillance and preventive archaeology, and have collaborated with archaeologists, geologists, hydro-biologists, and engineers. In this area of research, often lakes, lagoons, and rivers are characterized by low visibility. Some Quaternary events have deeply modified Ferrara’s landscape. Analysis of preserved samples from micro-drillings, underwater direct and indirect surveys, and the cataloguing of historical artefacts, are giving to the researchers a remarkable ancient chronology line. Recent studies confirmed anthropization sequences from the 1st Century B.C. to the 6th Century A.D. Waterscape archaeology, a multidisciplinary science devoted to the study of the human use of wetlands and anthropological connection with the water environment, testifies the ways in which people, in the past, constructed and used the water environment. In this article, we describe underwater cultural heritage research using 3D side scan sonar surveys and artifacts analysis, comparing data from direct diving investigations and stratigraphic data from micro-geological drillings on sites of Lago Tramonto, Gambulaga, Portomaggiore (Ferrara).
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