(CBS Local) — Could the Great Pyramid of Giza hold even more secrets of the ancient world? Scientists have reportedly discovered a giant void inside the famous structure which may reveal a hidden chamber.
In a report in the journal Nature, researchers from the “ScanPyramids” team used a method of tracking cosmic particles to scan the inside of the pyramid. The particles, called muons, are found in harmless cosmic rays that rain down on the planet. Scientists say the particles penetrate any material that made them the perfect tool to X-ray the pyramid with.
The report says the mysterious void is 98 feet long and sits above the structure’s Grand Gallery, located in the center of the landmark. “The void can be another chamber or a gallery, an aerial shaft, or an architectural fault that was sealed off,” archaeologist Monica Hanna said, via Live Science.
The discovery has also drawn skepticism from archaeologists who believe the void doesn’t hold any new secrets and is just a part of the pyramid’s construction thousands of years ago.
“It’s very clear what they found as a void doesn’t mean anything at all. There are many voids in the pyramid because of construction reasons,” Egyptologist Zahi Hawass claims.
One archaeologist, who recently discovered a long lost waterway to the ancient pyramids, says the void could have been intentionally put there by the ancient Egyptians. “It could be a kind of space that the builders left to protect the very narrow roof of the grand gallery from the weight of the pyramid,” archaeologist Mark Lehner told the BBC.
Lehner and a panel of researchers are reportedly reviewing ScanPyramids’ findings and discussing what the next step will be in exploring the giant void without damaging the structure which as stood since 2500 B.C.