Sponsored by: Archaeological Institute of America
The application of airborne LiDAR for the detection and documentation of archaeological sites in arid and semi-arid regions of the Americas has initiated a ‘paradigm shift’ for Mesoamerican archaeology. Here I discuss results from two archaeological projects in disparate areas of Mesoamerica that have utilized LiDAR to both examine intra-site and extra-site patterning. The first, centered at the site of Angamuco in the Lake Pátzcuaro Basin, Michoacán, used LiDAR as a tool to examine the spatial patterning of individual units of architecture. The second used LiDAR to document the complete settlement pattern of an unexplored valley within the Mosquitia tropical wilderness of Honduras. Both of these studies confirm that value and promise of LiDAR technology.