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Radar Locates Austrian Roman Ruins

September 23, 2001

VIENNA, Austria (AP) _ Scientists using ground radar and computers have accomplished what archaeologists using spades could not, uncovering the heart of one of Austria’s most important digs _ a 1st-century Roman military camp on the Danube River.

Wolfgang Neubauer, director of the University of Vienna’s Institute for Archaeological Science, said Sunday that experts had located the forum of Carnuntum, a Roman camp that dates to 6 A.D. and is considered one of the empire’s most important strategic strongholds north of the Alps.

Archaeologists have dug around the site about 25 miles east of Vienna for nearly a century, but geophysicists using radar were able to peer through layers of earth to locate the forum where the Romans held meetings, Neubauer said.

``This is the first time archaeologists have been able to locate such a find without excavation,″ he told the Austria Press Agency.

A computer analysis has revealed an extensive network of restaurants, taverns, porticos, baths and meeting halls _ including one that appears to have been equipped with underfloor heating.

In its heyday at the end of the 2nd century A.D., Carnuntum, which was used by the Romans as a base for military operations led by the emperor Tiberius against Germanic tribes, was home to about 50,000 people.

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