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Sman Teng, an outlying temple group at Angkor found by radar images


After 1994 SIR/C radar images revealed previously unrecorded temples in the perimeter of the ancient ceremonial complex, the area was further explored in December 1996 by NASA's Airborne Synthetic Aperture Radar (AIRSAR). These images show the newly discovered Sman Teng temple 30 km northwest of the main temple complex at Angkor. Arrows in each image point to the Sman Teng temple.

In the false-color radar image at left, the forest appears light tan-yellow, while cleared areas around the temple appear blue or purple. To the right of the temple is a blue rectangle, a tank or reservoir. Two pink spots between the temple and the tank are 'libraries,' a feature also seen at Angkor Wat. The image at right shows topography data. There the temple, some 15 meters high and about 100 meters long, appears bright pink-purple in a sea of green, yellow, and blue signifying lower elevations (mainly forest cover). The area in each image is 1.25 km2 (0.7 mi2 ) .

Due to presence of Khmer Rouge troops, ground verification and dating of this temple remain incomplete. NASA sources say a headman from a nearby village confirmed its existence and name, Sman Teng, for a type of Cambodian rice.

[Fig.1: A pair of AIRSAR images of Sman Teng, released February 12, 1998 (NASA/JPL  P-49493bc),


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