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Thursday, 15 November 2012

Ynyslas Wreck Recording Maritime Archaeology

Laser Scanning in action - © Crown Copyright RCAHMW

Yesterday the Royal Commission together with the Robotics Section of the Computer Science Department at Aberystwyth University undertook laser scanning of a former slate-carrying vessel that is eroding out of the steep bank of the River Leri at Ynyslas near Aberystwyth. The vessel is one of three wrecks in the area, all of which were depicted on an Admiralty chart of 1892. They are thought to have been part of the Derwenlas slate-carrying fleet, responsible for transporting slates from the Corris and Aberllefenni quarries. The vessels became redundant following the arrival of the railway, and around 1868 were put to their last useful purpose as markers in the channel.

The wreck at low tide - © Crown Copyright RCAHMW

Recent monitoring of the wreck by the Malvern Archaeological Diving Unit highlighted the increased erosion and exposure of the vessel and it was therefore important to make an accurate record, both to provide benchmark data for future monitoring and also, in the worst case scenario, ensure preservation by record. Laser scanning was the ideal technology to use given the muddy and tidal environment as well as the 3-dimentional nature of the wreck, all of which would have made traditional recording both a challenging and time consuming task.

Detail of the wreck showing the treenail fastenings - © Crown Copyright RCAHMW

Find out more about the wreck here:

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