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Dr. Till F. Sonnemann, is a postdoctoral researcher with the ERC-Synergy project NEXUS1492. His main research interests are the combination of GIS, remote sensing and geophysics in landscape archaeology and heritage. Within NEXUS, he focuses on developing a methodological approach to analyse Caribbean Indigenous landscapes, by using a variety of remote and close range sensing techniques at different scales on a number of locations in the Caribbean. The results are to be implemented in a GIS environment, and complemented with other information, to serve as a base for predictive modelling further understanding Amerindian settlements, and how Caribbean Indigenous landscapes changed with arrival of the Europeans.
His interest in non-invasive investigation techniques he developed by applying archaeological prospection projects in Germany and at UNAM Querétaro, while completing a degree in geophysics (Dipl. Geophys.) at the Universität Münster. He attended courses in Communication, Art History and Heritage Studies at Muenster, the Universidad de Granada, and Humboldt Universität Berlin. After completing the diploma thesis on lunar seismology at the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) in Berlin in 2005, he worked in research projects at the Universidad de Colima (Volcanology & Seismology), ETH Zürich (Photogrammetry & GIS), and Universidade de Vigo (GPR & GIS).
Working and studying at the University of Sydney, he was awarded a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in 2012. The thesis, titled Angkor Underground – Applying GPR to analyse the diachronic structure of a great urban complex, focuses on the extent and influence of the successive political and religious centres of the Khmer culture (8th to 15th century) in Cambodia using a combination of ground-penetrating radar, high resolution satellite SAR data and aerial imagery in combination with targeted excavations. The study included extensive field work in Cambodia as part of the Greater Angkor Project.
As honorary research associate, freelancer and collaborator with different research groups, he took the opportunity to conduct non-destructive archaeological and structural investigations at Australian, Cambodian and Uzbek cultural heritage sites, and remains associated with archaeological research in Southeast Asia as a member of the Yasodharâsrama Project. For 2 ½ years he taught tutorials and lectures in Geology, Geophysics and GIS at Sydney’s School of Geosciences, and worked within and after completing the PhD in commercial geophysics.
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