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A multidisciplinary non-invasive approach in geoarchaeology conducted on the archaeological area of Selinunte

  • Authors: Pisciotta A.; Martorana R.; Costanzo A.; Pannaccione Apa M.I.; Bongiovanni S.; Capizzi P.; D'Alessandro A.; Falcone S.; Piana C.L.
  • Publication year: 2019
  • Type: Contributo in atti di convegno pubblicato in volume
  • OA Link:


Southwestern Sicily is an area of infrequent seismic activity. Only an earthquake occurred in the Belice valley on 13 January 1968 is reported in the historic earthquake catalogues (see e.g. [1]) as severe event, that is characterized by moderate-high energy (M=6.5) and significant epicentral and local macroseismic intensities (Io=X and I=VII-VIII of the MCS scale). Nevertheless, some studies (e.g. [2]) suggest that probably at least two earthquakes struck this area, between the fourth century B.C. and the early Middle Ages, with energy able to damage and produce collapse in some temples of Selinunte. In this framework, we propose the use of non-invasive approaches in geoarchaeology for detecting and measuring structural damages in walls and foundations of Selinunte Acropolis, in order to identify any effects due to historic earthquakes. The methodology consists of an integration of landscape analysis, remote sensing and geophysical methods useful for dating important ancient seismic events. The intents of this multidisciplinary research are: 1) the detailed analysis of the most important structures and the landscape, also to assess kinematics behaviour of the masonry segments and their defects (cracks, disintegration of the original mortar, replacement of ashlars, etc.) and 2) the analysis of the seismic site response in order to assess potential amplification phenomena on the ground motion. The preliminary results seem to show significant residuals on the walls on the East side of the Acropolis, where also the geological and stratigraphical setting provide amplification effects in correspondence of frequency range typical of the earthquakes and for manmade structures.