Teen uses satellite imagery to discover possible ancient Mayan ruins

May 11, 2016 by Bob Yirka, Phys.org weblog

Credit: Canadian Space Agency, via TheTelegraph
(Phys.org)—William Gadoury, a 15 year old Mayan history enthusiast who lives in Saint-Jean-de-Matha in Lanaudière, Quebec, has, according to Le Journal de Montréal, used satellite imagery to make associations between ancient Mayan city locations and constellations, and in so doing, may have actually discovered a site that has not been previously known.

According to the news report, Gadoury, who claims to have been long interested in the Mayan culture, gained access to —after applying the Geographic Information System he found a correlation between 22 constellations and 117 Mayan cities. But, in so doing, he noticed that there appeared to be something missing, a 23rd constellation suggested there should have been another that did not appear in the database of Mayan cities, which suggested that there might be one in the location depicted in the constellation. Going back to satellite imagery, it appeared that the location indicated by the 23rd constellation did indeed seem to be a possible of a previously unknown Mayan city. Gadoury has already named it: K'àak' Chi' for "fire mouth."

More work will have to be done, of course, perhaps by Gadoury and others in the field, first, to ascertain if the correlations found between constellations and Mayan cities is correct—it is possible that there is some coincidence involved, after all there are many more city sites that do not appear in any of the constellations. There is also the troubling proposition that the Mayans were somehow able to map their cities, accurately portraying distances, which would have been extraordinarily difficult in jungle terrain. Also, it is also possible that the site that has potentially been discovered has actually been seen before, it sits close enough to a populated area that it would be hard to imagine that it has not been spotted—and has simply not yet made its way into the database Gadoury used in his study.

Unfortunately, there are no plans to mount an expedition to the site found on the maps, financial constraints are hampering any such excursion. But, Armand LaRocque an archeologist with the University of New Brunswick has suggested that if ever a team is assembled, they plan to include Gadoury as part of their venture.

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12 comments

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Noumenal
3.9 / 5 (7) May 11, 2016
Ironically Victoria, that is what happened here - and I suspect, with similar results in terms of money paid for the work.
antialias_physorg
4.3 / 5 (9) May 11, 2016
Ironically Victoria, that is what happened here - and I suspect, with similar results in terms of money paid for the work.

Don't waste your time talking to spam-bots.
Noumenal
5 / 5 (6) May 11, 2016
It was a joke; talking to trolls is the real waste of time.
barakn
2.3 / 5 (9) May 11, 2016
Oh, how amazing, the boy discovered a corn field.
24volts
1 / 5 (6) May 11, 2016
He might have discovered something not currently on the official maps but that the locals have always known about and couldn't care less. Quite a few things people from other areas 'discover' have been and are known to the people that already live there.
barakn
2.3 / 5 (9) May 11, 2016
torbjorn_b_g_larsson
3.5 / 5 (8) May 12, 2016
It was easy to see that it was bunk.

- Astroarcheology is a pseudoscience field.
- There are > 4 400 mayan sites listed in Wikipedia to pick a pattern from.
- There are 100s of constellations to pick a pattern from.
- If you put your finger on a large scale map of Yucatan, you will cover many Mayan sites.
- Armand LaRocque is not an archaeologist, he is a surveyor like Gadoury except doing the instrument surveys too: he is an associated research fellow at a land measurement and use department of a university.
- No archaeologist had been consulted.

But thanks for the link to the CNN debunk!
Da Schneib
4.4 / 5 (7) May 12, 2016
Maybe someone could get in touch with a local and just, you know, ask them. Or get them to go out and look at the site and maybe take some pictures. Might not be practical, but you never know until you ask.

On edit: maybe not; the site is apparently in a very inaccessible spot.
Da Schneib
4.4 / 5 (7) May 12, 2016
One must ask, however, if it's in such an inaccessible spot, what's a milpa doing there?
huckmucus
5 / 5 (5) May 12, 2016
Maybe someone could get in touch with a local and just, you know, ask them. Or get them to go out and look at the site and maybe take some pictures. Might not be practical, but you never know until you ask.

On edit: maybe not; the site is apparently in a very inaccessible spot.


Five will get you ten there is some Indian kid Snap Chatting his girl right now from less than a mile away. He'd probably wander over and take a few selfies for an extra gig of data.
moops
4.4 / 5 (7) May 13, 2016
So... is Phys.org going to put in an update or retract this article? Or are people going to discover this article with google 5 years from now and believe it all again?
KBK
5 / 5 (2) May 15, 2016
http://www.cnn.com/2016/05/11/americas/mayan-city-debunk/


When CNN was owned by Turner, it was almost OK and just moderately filled with shit, propaganda and outright lies.

When Turner was forced out for actually telling the truth now and then, afterward...it went much further downhill. Down into the major media slimehole. The one filled with smoke and mirrors.

Like a real human being, I gave up on all forms of major media decades ago. for all the right reasons.

CNN is a mouthpiece for oligarchy, like all media that is "allowed" to span a country.

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