Highlands & Islands

Culloden battlefield landscape laser-scanned

Lidar Scan
Image caption The Lidar scan will allow archaeologists to look at the site from different angles

The Culloden battlefield site is being scanned to provide a detailed model of the landscape 270 years on from the Jacobites' final stand.

Archaeologists from the National Trust for Scotland are using cutting-edge, laser-scanning technology to create the digital model.

Aerial Lidar (Light Detection and Ranging) is captured by using a pulsed laser beam fired from a plane.

It is hoped the model will help trace remains from the bloody battle.

The Battle of Culloden, fought in 1746, was the final confrontation between the Jacobite rising led by Bonnie Prince Charlie and government troops led by the Duke of Cumberland, William Augustus.

Using the latest technology, the laser beam scans from side to side over the area and measures thousands of points per second to build up a highly-accurate and detailed model of the ground and the features on it.

Stefan Sagrott, archaeological data officer for the National Trust for Scotland, said: "It's providing us with a view of the Culloden battlefield that we've never had before, and that's really exciting.

"We can filter the Lidar data to remove some of the vegetation such as tree cover and this might allow us to find archaeological remains which are currently hidden within the tree cover."

Mr Sagrott said the scan had also captured areas with prehistoric remains, such as the Clava Cairns, and these sites will also be looked at.

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