The time when we were first in contact was in the early 1970s. One of the elder colleagues from the Nara National Research Institute of Cultural Properties sent several aerial photographs to him asking whether some image enhancement could be applied. Through Irwin’s processing the moat of a mounded tomb, which was under a paddy field, became clear.

In the middle of 1980s, Irwin and his wife were invited to Japan as a specialist in photogrammetry by the Japanese Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (JSPRS). During their stay in Japan they visited our Institute in Nara on their way to Osaka. I had the opportunity to accompany them and introduce them to archaeological sites and historic places in the area. Irwin made several useful suggestions on archaeological prospection during our travel, especially when seeing “black” paddy fields. The time when we saw those fields was shortly after the harvest, and the straw scattered on the surface had been burnt. He pointed out that the homogeneous top soil and the burnt straw may result in difficulties when processing magnetometer survey data from the areas.

The photograph shows us together at the ICAP conference 2001 in Vienna, where Irwin gave one of the keynotes.