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A remarkable slice of ancient history has been unearthed beneath the depths of the Baltic Sea, marking a significant milestone in archaeological exploration. This groundbreaking discovery was serendipitously made in Germany’s Bay of Mecklenburg, during a routine student expedition.
Located approximately 10 kilometers (six miles) offshore, the team of researchers stumbled upon an intriguing anomaly using their multi-beam sonar system.
What they found was a sprawling, enigmatic wall extending nearly a kilometer along the seabed, nestled at a depth of 21 meters (69 feet). Detailed analysis has revealed that this colossal structure dates back over 10,000 years, potentially making it the oldest known megastructure built by ancient Europeans.
Comprising approximately 1,670 individual stones meticulously arranged to connect some 300 larger boulders, the structure hints at a deliberate construction, suggesting a specific purpose conceived millennia before being submerged beneath the sea.
Led by geophysicist Jacob Geerson from Kiel University, the research team has dubbed the discovery the "Blinker wall." They propose that it was likely built by Stone Age hunter-gatherers near a lake or marsh, serving as one of the earliest documented man-made hunting structures in history and ranking among Europe's largest Stone Age constructions.
Over millennia, Earth's geography has undergone profound transformations due to sea level fluctuations, erosion, and geological shifts, submerging countless ancient settlements beneath the waves and concealing their secrets. However, advancements in technology continue to unveil these submerged relics, offering invaluable insights into our ancestors' way of life.
While the precise function of the Blinker wall remains elusive, experts speculate it might have functioned as a hunting aid, possibly guiding reindeer herds. The construction's strategic layout suggests the intentional creation of bottlenecks to corral animals, with the potential presence of a second adjacent wall hinted at by the researchers.
Detailed examination of the structure's dimensions, composition, and alignment strongly indicates human involvement, ruling out natural formation. The team's analysis posits the Blinker wall's construction over 10,000 years ago, with submersion occurring around 8,500 years ago.
The significance of the Blinker wall extends beyond its age, promising valuable insights into the socioeconomic complexities of ancient hunter-gatherer societies in the region, illuminating their way of life and interaction with the environment.
Baltic Sea Anomaly.
The Baltic Sea is full off ancient mysteries, not only the discovery of the ruins of the 11,000-year-old megastructure but also the discovery in June 2011 by Swedish OceanX diving team of an enigmatic anomaly displaying unconventional characteristics sparking speculation that it could be a submerged UFO. Despite the explanation behind the Blinker wall, the UFO-like anomaly continues to baffle experts, shrouded in mystery to this day.
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By European Space Agency
In a groundbreaking development, researchers from the University of Leeds have unveiled a neural network that can swiftly and accurately chart the expanse of large Antarctic icebergs in satellite images, accomplishing the task in a mere 0.01 seconds. This novel approach is in stark contrast to the laborious and time-consuming manual efforts needed previously.
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NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover captured this 360-degree panorama using its black-and-white navigation cameras, or Navcams, at a location where it collected a sample from a rock nicknamed “Sequoia.” The panorama was captured on Oct. 21 and 26, 2023.NASA/JPL-Caltech The mission team is making sure the robotic scientist, now in its fourth extended mission, is staying strong, despite wear and tear from its 11-year journey.
Four thousand Martian days after setting its wheels in Gale Crater on Aug. 5, 2012, NASA’s Curiosity rover remains busy conducting exciting science. The rover recently drilled its 39th sample then dropped the pulverized rock into its belly for detailed analysis.
To study whether ancient Mars had the conditions to support microbial life, the rover has been gradually ascending the base of 3-mile-tall (5-kilometer-tall) Mount Sharp, whose layers formed in different periods of Martian history and offer a record of how the planet’s climate changed over time.
The latest sample was collected from a target nicknamed “Sequoia” (all of the mission’s current science targets are named after locations in California’s Sierra Nevada). Scientists hope the sample will reveal more about how the climate and habitability of Mars evolved as this region became enriched in sulfates –minerals that likely formed in salty water that was evaporating as Mars first began drying up billions of years ago. Eventually, Mars’ liquid water disappeared for good.
NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover used the drill on the end of its robotic arm to collect a sample from a rock nicknamed “Sequoia” on Oct. 17, 2023, the 3,980th Martian day, or sol, of the mission. The rover’s Mastcam captured this image.NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS “The types of sulfate and carbonate minerals that Curiosity’s instruments have identified in the last year help us understand what Mars was like so long ago. We’ve been anticipating these results for decades, and now Sequoia will tell us even more,” said Ashwin Vasavada, Curiosity’s project scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California, which leads the mission.
Deciphering the clues to Mars’ ancient climate requires detective work. In a recent paper published in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets, team members used data from Curiosity’s Chemistry and Mineralogy (CheMin) instrument to discover a magnesium sulfate mineral called starkeyite, which is associated with especially dry climates like Mars’ modern climate.
The team believes that after sulfate minerals first formed in salty water that was evaporating billions of years ago, these minerals transformed into starkeyite as the climate continued drying to its present state. Findings like this refine scientists’ understanding of how the Mars of today came to be.
Despite having driven almost 20 miles (32 kilometers) through a punishingly cold environment bathed in dust and radiation since 2012, Curiosity remains strong. Engineers are currently working to resolve an issue with one of the rover’s main “eyes” – the 34 mm focal length left camera of the Mast Camera, or Mastcam, instrument. In addition to providing color images of the rover’s surroundings, each of Mastcam’s two cameras helps scientists determine from afar the composition of rocks by the wavelengths of light, or spectra, they reflect in different colors.
This anaglyph version of Curiosity’s panorama taken at “Sequoia” can be viewed in 3D using red-blue glasses.NASA/JPL-Caltech To do that, Mastcam relies on filters arranged on a wheel that rotates under each camera’s lens. Since Sept. 19, the left camera’s filter wheel has been stuck between filter positions, the effects of which can be seen on the mission’s raw, or unprocessed, images. The mission continues to gradually nudge the filter wheel back toward its standard setting.
If unable to nudge it back all the way, the mission would rely on the higher resolution 100 mm focal length right Mastcam as the primary color-imaging system. As a result, how the team scouts for science targets and rover routes would be affected: The right camera needs to take nine times more images than the left to cover the same area. The teams also would have a degraded ability to observe the detailed color spectra of rocks from afar.
Along with efforts to nudge the filter back, mission engineers continue to closely monitor the performance of the rover’s nuclear power source and expect it will provide enough energy to operate for many more years. They have also found ways to overcome challenges from wear on the rover’s drill system and robotic-arm joints. Software updates have fixed bugs and added new capabilities to Curiosity, too, making long drives easier for the rover and reducing wheel wear that comes from steering (an earlier addition of a traction-control algorithm also helps reduce wheel wear from driving over sharp rocks).
Meanwhile, the team is preparing for a break of several weeks in November. Mars is about to disappear behind the Sun, a phenomenon known as solar conjunction. Plasma from the Sun can interact with radio waves, potentially interfering with commands during this time. Engineers are leaving Curiosity with a to-do list from Nov. 6 to 28, after which period communications can safely resume.
More About the Mission
Curiosity was built by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which is managed by Caltech in Pasadena, California. JPL leads the mission on behalf of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington. Malin Space Science Systems in San Diego built and operates Mastcam.
For more about Curiosity, visit:
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Last Updated Nov 06, 2023 Related Terms
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There is much written about the mysterious extraterrestrial beings known as the "Dropa," described as extraterrestrial greys, who, around 12,000 years ago, experienced a crash landing on Earth in the Baian-Kara-Ula Mountains along the Chinese-Tibetan border.
According to what may be the earliest version of the tale, in 1937 an archeological expedition in the Bayan Har mountains led by Chi Pu Tei found half buried on the dust floor a large round stone disc, in total they found 716 stone discs and each disc was 9 inches (22.7 cm) in diameter and 3/4 inch (2 cm) thick. Each disc also had an exactly circular 2 cm hole in its center.
Besides the stones, the cavern walls where adorned with pictograms portraying our Solar System and intricate maps illustrating routes among the stars using intersecting lines and dots as well as remains of thin bodies with unusually large heads were also present at the site.
Amazingly, not only all 716 granite discs, dated to 12,000 years before present, were filled with carved tiny hieroglyph-like markings, which, after decoding the markings in 1962, turned out to be a ‘record’ of alien writing composed of microscopic characters written in a language never encountered before .
In 1966 further research has been conducted by Soviet researchers in Moscow who discovered that they contained large amount of cobalt and other metals, that they behaved as electrical conductors, and that they produced a humming sound when placed on a special turntable.
It would have made it difficult for the primitive people to carve the lettering, especially with such minute characters. When testing a disc with an oscillograph, a surprising oscillation rhythm was recorded as if, the scientists said, they had once been electrically charged or had functioned as electrical conductors.
The stone discs told the story of the Dropa people, space travelers from a distant planet whereby one stone disc had a thin spiral groove filled with hieroglyphics that told of the Dropa crashing their spaceship 12,000 years ago and they couldn’t repair their craft. Local Chinese (Han) killed off most of them and the survivors were those intombed in the cave.
The Dropa stones have become a focal point of controversy, with numerous assertions suggesting that they might be nothing more than an elaborate hoax. However, when researchers visited the Banpo museum in Xian in 1994 where several discs were on display, they were informed by the museum director that higher authorities had mandated the destruction of the discs. Officially, the museum did not recognize the existence of these mysterious stones.
This raises the question: were the 716 stone discs, purportedly bearing evidence of extraterrestrial visitation to Earth, truly unearthed, or is there a deliberate effort to conceal their discovery?
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