US

Archaeologist points to hidden monument in Jordan's Petra

  • This handout zoomed-in UAV image, provided by Dr. Christopher A. Tuttle, Executive Director of the Council of American Overseas Research Centers, shows a platform hidden under the sand in Petra, Jordan. A U.S. archaeologist says satellite and drone images led to a new discovery in the ancient city of Petra _ a massive platform hidden under sand. Tuttle said late Friday that the platform was not clearly visible from the ground, and that only images taken from above it revealed the shape. (Council of American Overseas Research Centers/I. LaBianca via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT

    This handout zoomed-in UAV image, provided by Dr. Christopher A. Tuttle, Executive Director of the Council of American Overseas Research Centers, shows a platform hidden under the sand in Petra, Jordan. A U.S. archaeologist says satellite and drone images led to a new discovery in the ancient city of Petra _ a massive platform hidden under sand. Tuttle said late Friday that the platform was not clearly visible from the ground, and that only images taken from above it revealed the shape. (Council of American Overseas Research Centers/I. LaBianca via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT  (The Associated Press)

  • This undated handout image, provided by Dr. Christopher A. Tuttle, Executive Director of the Council of American Overseas Research Centers, shows U.S. archaeologist Christopher A. Tuttle investigating the doorsill of the small building on the platform, looking southwest in Petra, Jordan. Tuttle said satellite and drone images led to a new discovery in the ancient city of Petra in southern Jordan -- a massive platform hidden under sand. Tuttle said late Friday that the platform was not clearly visible from the ground, and that only images taken from above it revealed the shape. He says it may have been used for ceremonial purposes because it was fronted on one side by columns and a monumental staircase. (Council of American Overseas Research Centers/G. al Faqeer via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT

    This undated handout image, provided by Dr. Christopher A. Tuttle, Executive Director of the Council of American Overseas Research Centers, shows U.S. archaeologist Christopher A. Tuttle investigating the doorsill of the small building on the platform, looking southwest in Petra, Jordan. Tuttle said satellite and drone images led to a new discovery in the ancient city of Petra in southern Jordan -- a massive platform hidden under sand. Tuttle said late Friday that the platform was not clearly visible from the ground, and that only images taken from above it revealed the shape. He says it may have been used for ceremonial purposes because it was fronted on one side by columns and a monumental staircase. (Council of American Overseas Research Centers/G. al Faqeer via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT  (The Associated Press)

  • This undated handout image, provided by Dr. Christopher A. Tuttle, Executive Director of the Council of American Overseas Research Centers, shows exposed flagstone pavers of the interior, smaller platform, looking north, in Petra, Jordan. U.S. archaeologist Christopher A. Tuttle said satellite and drone images led to a new discovery in the ancient city of Petra in southern Jordan -- a massive platform hidden under sand. Tuttle said late Friday, June 10, 2016 that the platform was not clearly visible from the ground, and that only images taken from above it revealed the shape. He said it may have been used for ceremonial purposes because it was fronted on one side by columns and a monumental staircase. (Council of American Overseas Research Centers/ Q. Tweissi via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT

    This undated handout image, provided by Dr. Christopher A. Tuttle, Executive Director of the Council of American Overseas Research Centers, shows exposed flagstone pavers of the interior, smaller platform, looking north, in Petra, Jordan. U.S. archaeologist Christopher A. Tuttle said satellite and drone images led to a new discovery in the ancient city of Petra in southern Jordan -- a massive platform hidden under sand. Tuttle said late Friday, June 10, 2016 that the platform was not clearly visible from the ground, and that only images taken from above it revealed the shape. He said it may have been used for ceremonial purposes because it was fronted on one side by columns and a monumental staircase. (Council of American Overseas Research Centers/ Q. Tweissi via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT  (The Associated Press)

A U.S. archaeologist says satellite and drone images have led to a new discovery in the ancient city of Petra — a massive platform hidden under sand.

Traders known as Nabataeans carved Petra into rose-hued sandstone two millennia ago. The UNESCO World Heritage site is Jordan's main tourist draw.

Christopher A. Tuttle of the Council of American Overseas Research said late Friday that the platform was not clearly visible from the ground, and that only images taken from above revealed the shape.

He says only an excavation can reveal its original purpose. He says it may have been used for public displays because it was fronted on one side by columns and a monumental staircase.

Tuttle and a collaborator published their findings in an academic journal last month.