Right from the moment Google Earth entered the Web back in ’05, it didn’t instantly send office globes back in time to decorative accessories, but it opened up global exploration with just a single click. It doesn’t end there, the feature didn’t become a mere neat toy; there have been some extraordinary and incredible Google Earth discoveries from just browsing to accessing satellite images. The many satellite image discoveries include; fossil bones, pyramids, underwater landforms and more. Below is a list of some intriguing Google Earth discoveries.
Top Ten Google Earth Discoveries
10. The Pygmy Seahorse
At 10th on Google Earth discoveries is the underwater Street Views feature that enables the exploration of great ocean depths.
Off the coast of Australia, and further ahead the Great Barrier Reef the underwater Street View feature found a tiny pygmy seahorse just as similar to the one pictured. The picture was taken at depths beyond 300ft below sea level. This is an extraordinary snapshot considering that this seahorse normally grows to approximately 1.5cm in length.
Pygmy seahorse species are often spotted around coral reefs in different parts of the world, usually in southern Japanese and Malaysian waters, but never around Australian waters.
9. The Egyptian Pyramids
Angela Micol, an archaeology researcher found several sites in southern Egypt using satellite images. These sites contained remarkable mounds that had eroded. They were triangular in shape with the largest being 620ft wide… which is about 3 times larger than the Great Pyramid.
Although further research is required to verify if at all they are pyramids,” it’s pretty clear we are on course,” according to Dr Micol. Google Earth images are paving the way for satellite image research.
8. Tombs and Archaeological Sites
Among other Google Earth discoveries are tombs and archaeological sites in Saudi Arabia. David Kennedy, a professor from the University of Western Australia used Google Earth to explore Saudi Arabia for tombs and archaeological sites. He discovered thousands of them that could be over 8,000 years old.
7. Prehistoric Fish Trap
In 2009, US aerial photographers described spotting an unusual form in waters near the Teifi River. Dr. Ziggy Otto from Pembrokeshire College found that in the 11th century, a Welsh community created an 800ft structure to help catch fish.
6. Kamil Crater
In yet another Google Earth discovery, an Italian researcher found the Kamil Crater using satellite imagery. This crater may just be the most conserved in the world. Craters normally dissipate after years, but the Kamil Crater has been kept in shape by bedrock.
5. Hominid Ancestors
Prof. Lee Berger from the University of Witwatersrand used landscape imagery to spot cave sites. He discovered 600 unknown fossil deposits and caves in an area regarded as Cradle of Mankind.
Most significantly, he came across 2 preserved skeletons over 2 million years old. This aided in proving that another species of mankind ancestry existed.
4. Cambodian Minefields
At number 4 on our list of Google Earth discoveries is the world’s largest landmine clearing organization HALO Trust which is using Google Earth to analyze landmine affected areas of Cambodia and Angola. The most affected areas are near the Thailand border where regular clashes occur and in Angola’s Cabinda province previously ravaged by civil war.
3. An Ancient Roman Villa
Luca Mori an Italian programmer studied satellite maps of his hometown and stumbled upon a 2,000 year old oval form near Parma. He later discovered remains of courtyards and a river of an ancient Roman Villa.
2. Lost Rainforest on Mount Mabu
Botanic Scientists at Kew used Google Earth to survey certain eminent areas of Africa. They discovered green patches on Mount Mabu in Mozambique, and it turned out as the largest, undocumented rainforest in southern Africa.
The Mozambique civil war and the harsh terrain had previously prevented explorers and scientists from surveying the area. It is also believed that species living there may have evolved over the years in isolation without influence from other known creatures. Scientists immediately booked trips and checked out the area.
1. The S.S Jassim Wreckage
At number 1 on our list of Google Earth discoveries is the S.S Jassim shipwreck. The Bolivian ferry hit shallow water off the Sudanese coast in 2003. Although the shipwreck wasn’t actually sited on Google Earth, the image was and has now become the largest, most visible and most searched for shipwreck.
With all these incredible and amazing discoveries on Google Earth, researchers, explorers and scientists have put more emphasis on using the Google Earth feature to survey the world and make previously unnoted and undocumented discoveries known. As the platform enhances further, more and clear satellite images are to be discovered putting Google Earth in a class of its own.
Images previously documented by governments can now be accessed by anyone from the comfort of their homes or anywhere without going through NASA.
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