An illustration of a record of a 2D seismic line taken adjacent
to the coast along the eastern edge of the Liverpool Bay study area, with, underneath,
an archaeological interpretation of the same record. The current seabed is shown as
a red line.Two distinct prehistoric river channels (outlined in green) are evident in
Identifying submerged landscape features -
To understand how archaeologists use the data from seismic reflection survey
we can look at some examples from 2 and 3D data sets. The diagram on the left shows an example
of a record of a 2D seismic line taken adjacent to the coast along the eastern edge of the
Liverpool Bay study area with, underneath, an archaeological interpretation. The present
day sea floor is represented as a red horizontal line with very little undulation, which
indicates the flat nature of the seabed in this area. Beneath the seabed, the seismic image
shows, in profile, two large prehistoric river channels cut into the underlying deposits.
These are part of a complex river system that dominated this area of Liverpool Bay and provided
prehistoric communities with a wealth of resources, including water, game, fish and reeds
for basketry and matting. A seismic line (below) taken from the Bristol Channel study area,
close to the coast of Tenby, illustrates a more complex landscape including low hills and
rises. Such features were important in an otherwise low-lying landscape providing hunters
with views of the grazing herds on the lowland plains.
Another 2D seismic line, this time taken near the Welsh coast of
the Bristol Channel, with, underneath, an archaeological interpretation of the same record.
The current seabed is shown as a red line. Underneath this, the prehistoric land surface
of low hills and rises is highlighted in green.