Solidot | Spy satellites discover the Lost empire of Afghanistan

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for archaeologists, Afghanistan is almost a no-go area for fieldwork because there is no guarantee of security. Researchers in the United States and Afghanistan now use commercial satellites and spy satellites to discover thousands of ancient sites that have never been registered in the country . For the past more than 1000 years, these sites have been an important crossroads connecting East and west. The findings are expected to broaden the understanding of the already-disappearing empire, while giving the devastated country an opportunity to protect its precious cultural heritage. Researchers found that [inthelate,16 century, in the early 17th century, there were 119 post stations in the southern deserts of Afghanistan, each about 20 kilometres apart–about a day’s walk from the caravan. These huge mud-brick buildings can accommodate hundreds of people and tens of thousands of camels. This route connects the capital of the mighty Safavid dynasty to Esfahan and the Mughal Empire, which governs the Indian subcontinent.