The Institute of Paleontology and Geology of Mongolian Academy of Sciences (IPG) and The Explorers Club Hong Kong Chapter, supported by INFINITI Motor Company, announced a breakthrough in paleontological methodology on June 29. Achieved through advanced mapping technology, the collaborative group discovered many significant findings after a 20-day expedition in the Gobi Desert that revisited the route of Roy Chapman Andrews’ groundbreaking explorations nearly 100 years ago.
The 35-person multidisciplinary team of paleontologists, geologists, archaeologists, scientists and The Explorers Club members found possible evidence of three new dinosaur species, more than 250 new fossil locations, five entirely new areas previously not known to contain fossils, and hundreds of fossilized bones, including those of mammals, which were not previously known to have existed in the area. The paleontologists will analyze the fossils they took back to Ulaanbaatar to validate the findings and will explore the newly discovered sites over the next several years, if not decades.
Paleontologists were able to analyze an enormous amount of data collected from satellite and drone imagery to pinpoint high probability locations for fossilization, based on geological and sedimentary markers. The team could then travel quickly to the sites in a fleet of INFINITI SUVs to prospect for fossils. The combination of satellite and drone imaging, together with a team of paleontologists — all working together — has never be done before. This represents a new, more efficient method of discovering dinosaur fossils.