Originally posted on Rashid's Blog:
Arabia is a vast desert today,but it was not so always. Satellite images have revealed that a network of ancient rivers once habited Arabian Desert. The images triggered a major potentially ground-breaking research project led by the University of Oxford into human evolutionary heritage. The research team will look at how long-term climate change affected early humans and animals who settled or passed through and what responses determined whether they were able to survive or died out.
In the new project, a multidisciplinary team of researchers will study the effects of environmental change in the Arabian Peninsula over the last two million years. The systematic study of the Pleistocene to Holocene periods will hopefully lead to many breakthroughs.
Researchers will study the landscape features and excavate sites of likely archaeological interest, using the network of water courses as a map. They will use the latest dating techniques to pinpoint the ages of fossils of animals, plants and different stone tool technologies and compare the similarities and differences displayed in the region’s rock art.