Since November 2015 the IMTO efforts were directed on the investigation of the area surrounding the "fortress" of Salut, where the associated large settlement was discovered, occupying the slope of the hill and extending onto the plain. While for the precise evaluation of the site extension further researches are surely needed a few structures were highlighted on the western slope of the northern part of the hill as well. When considered together with the "husn", the so called Qaryat Salut appears to be the most impressive Iron Age site so far discovered in the whole South East Arabia.
The occupation of the site seems to span all the Iron Age, with important evidence concerning the latest phases of this period.
The extensive area investigated by archaeologists has been divided into four main zones, named after the cardinal points.
Qaryat Salut (SL_Q) was divided in four zones, named after the cardinal points. The main effort was directed to the excavation of SL_Q North and East, where it seems to be the core of the settlement. Among the most remarkable finding it worth mention the massive fortification wall of the Qaryat and the so called "productive area", possibly related to some metallurgical activity.
SL_Q East is densely occupied by an extensive terraces system, associated to particular features intended to drain water outside them. A complex of adjoining rooms was also highlighted in front of the terraces, sometimes showing noticable mudbrick floors.
The so called "mosque" is included in SL_Q West and consist of a later building possibly interpreted as an Islamic place of worship and built on earlier remains partially attributable to Iron Age.
The assemblage of material culture emerged from the excavation at Qaryat Salut, once examined in relation to its archeological context, can provide invaluable insight on a multitude of aspects of an Iron Age community daily life. At the site, several were the objects find still in situ, a particularly meaningful circumstance inasmuch it provides a snapshot on a genuine episode of past life. It's worth mentioning an amazing, complete Iron Age storage jar, still covered with a pottery lid, the bases of other two similar jar, one of wich related to the later occupational level of the "productive area" and some grinding stones in situ, in an area apparently connected to some domestic activities.
For a more complete exhibition of the great finds see the page Art and Craft.