What is excavation?

What Does excavation Mean

The Latin word excavatio came to Castilian as excavation . The notion refers to the act and result of digging : making a hole , a pothole , a hole or a trench . This action involves extracting material or part of the mass of a solid , removing it from where it was.

For example: "The judge ordered an excavation in the garden of the house to try to find the remains of the victim" , "The investigators suggested carrying out a new excavation in the region since there could be more buried fossils" , "The excavation more recently it has allowed to reveal several rooms of the Roman palace ” .

Excavation is one of the most frequent procedures in archeology and geology . In this way objects from the past can be unearthed and brought to light.
When an excavation develops, layers of soil are removed in the reverse order of their formation (since the layers closest to the surface are the least old). Excavation always involves a certain degree of destruction because the original position of the sediments ceases to exist.
The excavation processes are linked to stratigraphy : the study of strata . In some areas, elements from different eras coexist underground; that is why it is important to detect and distinguish the various strata and thus determine which is the belonging of each object.
Beyond archeology, excavations are also carried out to build basements and to develop other kinds of works . In the framework of engineering and architecture, excavating means extracting a volume of soil.
Given the technological advances related to this activity, it is possible to carry out an excavation manually or using certain machinery, and this depends mainly on the type of soil in which you want to work. Other issues to organize the work also come into play, such as slopes, levels, heights and dimensions, as indicated on the plans.
A number of different materials and tools are required to carry out an excavation , and workers typically position them next to the job site to prevent them from interfering with their activities. A concept related to excavations is the water table , that is, the upper level of any aquifer; if this is very high, then it becomes important to use pumping equipment. Regarding the height, shoring should be used to avoid potential sliding of the walls in excavations higher than 2 meters.
There is a long list of risks that make the work of excavators difficult, and that is why it must be studied with great care before starting any project, to take the necessary precautions in each case; among the most common are the following:

* falls, both at the initial level and at the bottom of the excavation;

* falling rocks, earth or any other work material;

* the land or buildings that adjoin it collapses;

* that workers are trapped;

* floods ;

* injuries caused by accidents with tools or work objects;

* vehicle crashes;

* overturning of machines;

* excessive noise for prolonged periods, causing damage to personnel;

* direct contact with gas or electricity, or even water leaks, because of the inadvertent destruction of underground channels.
When an excavation is carried out in a grave, the contents must be taken in a methodical way, paying special attention to the state of the corpses, leaving a record of their positions and preserving all their skeletal remains . In addition, it is mandatory to make the layout of the plan and the elevation, taking note of the construction technique used.

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