Authorities announced Thursday that scientists have discovered a hidden passage inside Egypt’s Great Pyramid as part of a seven-year international research project.
The passage is nine meters (30 feet) long and more than two meters wide, the antiquities ministry said in a statement.
Egyptian Tourism and Antiquities Minister Ahmed Issa told reporters at an ancient site in Giza, also known as the Pyramid of Khufu or Cheops, that a “pointed corridor” with a triangular ceiling “has been discovered on the north side of King Khufu’s Great Pyramid. ” “.
The discovery was part of the ScanPyramids project launched in 2015 as a collaboration between major universities in France, Germany, Canada and Japan and a team of Egyptian experts.
ALSO READ: Plane-sized void found in Egypt’s Great Pyramid: scientists
Archaeologist Zahi Hawass, Egypt’s former antiquities minister, is leading a committee overseeing the project, which uses cutting-edge technology to visualize hidden parts of the pyramid’s interior without excavating.
The technology is a combination of infrared thermography, muon radiography and 3D reconstruction, all of which the researchers say are non-invasive and non-destructive.
Chambers of the Great Pyramid of Giza
The Great Pyramid is the largest in Giza, at 146 meters tall, and is the only surviving structure of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.
Built about 4,500 years ago, it consists of three known chambers and, like other pyramids in Egypt, was intended as a pharaoh’s tomb.
ALSO READ: How Egypt revives tourism to the country
Hawass told reporters at the pyramid on Thursday that “there is a strong possibility that the tunnel is protecting something. In my opinion, this is the protection of the real burial chamber of King Khufu.”
In 2017, ScanPyramids announced the discovery of a cavity the size of a passenger plane, the first major structure discovered inside the Great Pyramid since the 19th century.