What appeared to be cracks could just as easily be tool marks, mason’s lines, flaking, or just shadows.Larger, more structural questions presented themselves as well. Did the shaft continue on the opposite side, or come to an abrupt end against the core masonry of the pyramid? Zahi Hawass, the Secretary of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, had some decisions to make.Beginning with Waynman Dixon’s iron rods, researchers have been probing the Great Pyramid’s mysterious claustrophobic passageways for 140 years.But now, using technology designed for uses as divergent as space exploration and terrestrial search and rescue, we are finally able to explore the chamber behind Gantenbrink’s Door.Obviously, something of comparable size would not be able to fit through the hole in the first blocking slab, and minimizing damage meant the team could not drill a larger hole.The next mission would have to employ a probe that could fit through the tiny hole already made by Rover.The probe-mounted fiber optic camera was successfully deployed and gave us our first look behind Gantenbrink’s Door.What the Pyramid Rover team discovered was a small chamber formed by the Tura limestone U-block, the basal stone, the blocking slab/door, and a rough block of the local limestone on the opposite side, about 19 cm away from the “door.” But the probe camera had its limitations.
Through interviews and exchanges with the Djedi Project manager, Shaun Whitehead, as well as other team members, this article promises to be Pyramid Rover was a successful reconnaissance mission into the southern shaft coming out of the Queen’s Chamber (QCS).
There is an old adage that cave explorers use—take only pictures, leave only footprints.
But the pyramid shafts are a different type of spelunking and the Supreme Council of Antiquities was determined that whoever they selected for the next mission would leave no footprints at all.
In 20 Tomb Trekker would have to face off with a competing team from Leeds University for the right to explore the pyramid shafts.
The next mission into the Queen’s Chamber shafts would have two primary objectives: Send a robot crawler up QCS to explore the space behind the first blocking slab using the same opening Pyramid Rover had drilled, determine if the rough block at the opposite side was the end of the shaft or another blocking slab, and if the latter, drill a hole through it and see what is behind it.