Thursday, August 1, 2013

Cave mapping; master step in Spealeology

Cave mapping; master step in Spealeology
Dandeniya A.S1, Dewage D.D2, Jayasinghe P3 & Weliange W.S4
1BGJF Consultancy Services, 35A ½, Sunethradewi Road, Kohuwala, Nugegoda, Sri Lanka
2Departement of Archaeology, University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka
3Research Laboratory, Central Cultural Fund, No 11, Colombo 07, Sri Lanka
4Postgraduate Institute of Archaeology, 407, Bauddhaloka Mawatha, Colombo 7, Sri Lanka

Corresponding Author;
Cave mapping is the master step needed for detailed speleological studies since it provides the spatial distribution pattern of underground/surface caves. Post-Graduate Institute of Archaeology of the University of Kelaniya initiated a project on cave studies where mapping is an important aspect. We developed our own method for mapping. During our cave studies conducted in late November 2009 and early January 2010, four caves in Rathnapura; Sthreepura Cave (06°49' 54.6'' N, 80°22' 27.8'' E) and Divaguhawa Lena Cave in Kuruvita (06°49' 50.1'' N, 80°22' 23.8'' E), Vavul Guhava Cave in Kosgala (06°43' 31.5'' N, 80°20' 34.6'' E) and Pelpola Lena Cave in Kehelowitagama (06°41' 26.4'' N, 80°19' 22.1'' E) and six caves in Nikawalamulla; including a River-cave (07°01'. 54.6'' N, 080°14' 36.0'' E), Hakurugala Raja Mahawiharaya Cave (07°01'. 54.6'' N, 080°14' 36.0'' E), Diya-Pihilla Guhawa Cave (07°01'. 53.5'' N, 080°14' 36.5'' E), Crack-cave (07°01'. 57.9'' N, 080°14' 43.3'' E) and Yahal Lena Cave (07°02'. 04.3'' N, 080°14' 38.9'' E) were mapped. A compass, a distant range finder, a 50 meter tape, a rotring board, a digital Camera and 1mm graph papers were used for mapping and recording. A team of five is needed for 1) writing notes 2) sketching and drawing maps 3) manipulating tape 4) reading compass and range finder and 5) photographing. Map of the cave-ground, long section of the cave mouth, longitudinal section in the cave interior, and several cross sections perpendicular to the longitudinal section were drawn for each cave. By using software programs (Auto cad, Arch GIS and 3D Max), maps were generated. Maps make easier to acclimatize to the cave habitats and help eliminate the Claustrophobia. Maps also help understand types and shapes of spaces within the cave, and formation type.
Key words; Sri Lanka, space distribution, shapes, formation types, Claustrophobia

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