Egypt detects 'impressive' anomaly in Giza pyramids

Egypt detects 'impressive' anomaly in Giza pyramids
French architect Jean-Pierre Houdin, noted for a theory on pyramid construction, speaks during a press conference, in front of the Khufu pyramid in Giza, Egypt, Monday, Nov. 9, 2015. Egypt's Antiquities Ministry says a scanning project in the Giza pyramids has identified thermal anomalies, including one in the largest pyramid, built by Cheops, known locally as Khufu. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)

Two weeks of new thermal scanning in Egypt's Giza pyramids have identified anomalies in the 4,500 year-old burial structures, including a major one in the largest pyramid, the Antiquities Ministry announced Monday.

Antiquities Minister Mamdouh el-Damaty and technical experts working on the project showed the higher temperature being detected in three specific adjacent stones at the bottom of the pyramid in a live thermal camera presentation to journalists.

The scanning showed "a particularly impressive one (anomaly) located on the Eastern side of the Khufu pyramid at ground level," the ministry said in a statement. The largest of the three Giza pyramids is known locally as Khufu and internationally as Cheops.

The thermal scanning was carried out at all times of the day, including during sunrise, as the sun heats the structures from the outside, and then during sunset as the pyramids are cooling down. The speed of the heating and cooling phases is being used to uncover "hypotheses" such as empty areas in the pyramids, internal air currents, or different building materials used.

"The first row of the pyramid's stones are all uniform, then we come here and find that there's a difference in the formation," said el-Damaty, pointing at the three stones showing higher temperatures.

While inspecting the area, el-Damaty said they found "that there is something like a small passage in the ground that you can see, leading up to the pyramids ground, reaching an area with a different temperature. What will be behind it?"

Other heat anomalies were detected in the upper half of the pyramid that the experts said need to be investigated further.

Egypt detects 'impressive' anomaly in Giza pyramids
French architect Jean-Pierre Houdin, right, and Egypt's Antiquities Minister Mamdouh el-Damaty, second right, stand near the limestone rocks that are displayed on the screen showing varying temperatures represented by different colors with live footage from a thermal camera, in front of the Khufu pyramid in Giza, Egypt, Monday, Nov. 9, 2015. Egypt's Antiquities Ministry says a scanning project in the Giza pyramids has identified thermal anomalies, including one in the largest pyramid, built by Cheops, known locally as Khufu. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)

El-Damaty invited all Egyptologists, especially those interested in ancient Egyptian architecture, to join in the research and help come up with ideas on what could be behind the anomalies.

The pyramids, located on the outskirts of Cairo, are one of the major tourist attractions in the country. The pyramids, which were used as sacred burial structures, were built in the fourth Pharaonic dynasty. The great pyramid is the oldest and only surviving monument of the seven wonders of the ancient world.

  • Egypt detects 'impressive' anomaly in Giza pyramids
    Members from a French research team use a thermal camera, center, to detect varying temperatures of the limestone blocks during a press conference, in front of the Khufu pyramid in Giza, Egypt, Monday, Nov. 9, 2015. Egypt's Antiquities Ministry says a scanning project in the Giza pyramids has identified thermal anomalies, including one in the largest pyramid, built by Cheops, known locally as Khufu. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)
  • Egypt detects 'impressive' anomaly in Giza pyramids
    Egypt's Antiquities Minister Mamdouh el-Damaty, briefs journalists after a press conference held in front of the Khufu pyramid in Giza, Egypt, Monday, Nov. 9, 2015. Egypt's Antiquities Ministry said a scanning project in the Giza pyramids has identified thermal anomalies, including one in the largest pyramid, built by Cheops, known locally as Khufu. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty)

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Nov 09, 2015
Naahhhh, No grain. The good Doctor's tribbles ate it all up, so scientists should not tribble themselves to go after it.

Nov 09, 2015
Interesting. Wouldnt it be spectacular if they found some kind of small undisturbed chamber or something? The fact they see a small passage quickly tempers that though. If it ever was anything it most certainly has been looted long ago.

Nov 10, 2015
Ali Capone's vault!

Nov 10, 2015
Could be priestly places of worship to the Pharaoh.
The place was built to be forever. Properly fitting for a god and the priests were to be caretakers.
Impressive. To this day and
until humanity passes away this place shall exist.
Hat tip to the ancestors, savages that we think they were. Could be we are the vulgate.
Everything is speculation. It may have been a wonderful time. Much lower population and a plethora of animals in the world. A civilization about which we really know little. An empire that has echoed down the halls of time.
ALL respect should be given. I seriously doubt our memory shall endure so long as that of Egypt.

Nov 10, 2015
Could be priestly places of worship to the Pharaoh.
The place was built to be forever. Properly fitting for a god and the priests were to be caretakers.
Impressive. To this day and
until humanity passes away this place shall exist.
Hat tip to the ancestors, savages that we think they were. Could be we are the vulgate.
Everything is speculation. It may have been a wonderful time. Much lower population and a plethora of animals in the world. A civilization about which we really know little. An empire that has echoed down the halls of time.
ALL respect should be given. I seriously doubt our memory shall endure so long as that of Egypt.

Nov 10, 2015
More interesting yet is the prospect of finding the tomb of Nefertiti behind a wall of the small chamber in which they found Tutankhamen.

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