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Mysterious Void In Great Pyramid Discovered Using Cosmic Rays
Meriame Berboucha , Contributor
Nov 7, 2017 @ 06:54 AM
Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own.
© 2017 Forbes Media LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Source; excerpts follow:


You've probably heard about cosmic rays, or maybe you think they're some kind of space-laser-beam thing. Actually, 'cosmic rays' is the term used by scientists to describe high-energy radiation originating from outside our atmosphere and from the depths of space. Once this radiation comes into contact with our atmosphere, a shower of high-energy particles are created. Amongst these high-energy particles are particles called muons. You can think of muons as heavy electrons. It is these heavy electrons that scientists have used to discover a void in the Great Pyramid of Egypt.

… The team led by Kunihiro Morishima, managed to map out the subterranean chamber, the Queen's chamber and the King's chamber; all well-documented rooms. However, with their technique they also discovered a large void located above the Grand Gallery which connects the King and Queen's chambers. It was about 30 meters long. More muons were detected in this 'void' region since there was no rock for the muons to be absorbed by. It was because of this that they discovered the void.

Although they do not know the purpose of this void, this is the first step to finding out how the Egyptians used this area. There are others that believe this void is just a gap due to structural collapse and old age. I guess, only time will tell us whether it is another secret room or just structural collapse.

This is an interesting technique although it's not a new idea; see this article (PDF file) published in 1970. Also, there are questions regarding the value of this discovery, and objections to the way it's being reported in the media. Terms like "mysterious void", "hidden structure", and "secret chamber" tend to sensationalize the issue. What's most likely is this void, assuming it's deliberate, has a very mundane purpose.

Indeed, in the very same pyramid, above the "King's Chamber", we see a series of voids and stone slabs, topped by slabs forming a peak. It is believed this was an early engineering effort to redirect the weight of the stones above around the burial chamber. (Sort of like Gothic arches in cathedrals.) Why wouldn't they do that for the Grand Gallery as well? The Gallery is a remarkable architectural flourish on an impressive scale; protecting the corbelled ceiling from the weight of the higher stonework makes sense.

Or maybe they left this gap to reduce the number of stones they had to drag all the way up there. Who knows; there are plenty of non-sensational explanations.

The chances of there being mummies or corporeal treasure up there is close to zero. However, this is not to say that there's nothing interesting in there; the first thing that came to my mind is possible graffiti left by workers.

I think the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities is not going to act on this anytime soon (if at all). They probably have a project schedule going years into the future, and they're not going to waste resources exploring another empty space in a pyramid. (Yeah, this isn't the first; lots of pyramids have voids.)

Finally, I've noticed just how ignorant the media can be regarding Egyptology: Several articles written about this discovery have been published under photos of the WRONG PYRAMID! Instead of the Great Pyramid of Khufu, they've shown photos of the pyramid of his son Khafre! Like this one (also from Forbes), or this one (by Reuters). The pyramid that has remnants of casing stones near the top is NOT the Great Pyramid; that's not Khufu, it's Khafre.

How embarrassing!


5 Comments On This Entry

Fascinated by Ancient Egypt, always have been. Read everything I can on it since I was 10.
Studied it for pleasure to diploma level a few years ago.
Have you considered visiting there? I'd probably go if it was assuredly safe for tourists and there would be no significant language barrier.


Or maybe they left this gap to reduce the number of stones they had to drag all the way up there.

I'd wager that the Egyptians didn't care how many stones got dragged up there since they didn't do any of the dragging...
How long before all the UFO and X-Files types start clamoring for an excavation of this void? "I want to belieeeeeve..."

My unit visited Alexandria & Cairo many years ago. We took a tour around the Great Sphinx and went inside one of the smaller pyramids nearby. Very cool!

Hi, yes I have. Havent had the time or money, usually have one and short of the other and vice versa.

Brother and sister-in-law have been there and Petra and said how friendly the Egyptians were. Will definitely go in the next few yrs.
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