The history of the ancient Egyptian pyramids is set to change significantly following the discovery of a mysterious chamber inside the Great Pyramid by a group of local and international researchers.
The secret space, which sits above the Grand Gallery, is estimated to be 30-metre-long and is the first of its kind to be discovered inside the pyramid since the nineteenth century.
The team of physicists, who are working under the supervision of the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities, hopes the find will shed more light on the intrigues of the Egyptian pyramids and help find answers to the unexplained questions about their creation.
But right now, the discovery of a secret chamber only deepens the mystery surrounding these ancient structures.
To scan the entire pyramid, the researchers employed a highly advanced technique that uses muon detectors, strategically positioned inside and outside the pyramid, to determine its inner structure.
Muons are particles that occur when cosmic rays strike atoms in the upper atmosphere. With highly penetrating muon detectors, researchers have been able to explore the inner structures of volcanoes and examine damaged nuclear reactors.
According to Mehdi Tayoubi, the president of the Heritage Innovation Preservation institute in Paris and the co-founder of an international team of researchers called Scan Pyramids, the mystery chamber could be either inclined or level, and might have two or more smaller spaces.
Although the team, which has been studying the Egyptian pyramids over the last few months, is yet to determine the real purpose of the chamber, Tayoubi believes it could have been “a second Grand Gallery”.
Unlike other Egyptian pyramids, which are built above underground tombs, the Grand Pyramid has several large chambers inside it, most of which were discovered in the nineteenth century.
Many Egyptologists have always wanted to study the mega structure further to see if there are more chambers hidden inside.
The new discovery therefore offers them renewed impetus to explore the pyramid, which is the largest and oldest pyramid in Egypt. The mammoth structure was constructed during the reign of Pharaoh Khufu, whose burial chamber is believed to be hidden somewhere inside the pyramid.