Robot designed by engineer Rob Richardson from the University of Leeds, UK, and colleagues has crawled up the tunnel carrying a bendy micro snake camera has sent back the first images of markings on the wall of a tiny chamber in the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt that have not been seen for 4500 years, the New Scientist reported on Thursday.
Images sent back by the camera have revealed hieroglyphs written in red paint and lines in the stone that could be marks left by stone masons when the chamber was being carved (Annales Du Service des Antiquités De L'Égypte, vol 84, ISBN: 978-977-704-184-3).
As the camera can see around the corners, the back of the stone door has been observed for the first time, scotching the more fanciful theories about the metal pins, says camera-designer Shaun Whitehead of the exploration company Scoutek, based in Melton Mowbray, UK.
Our new pictures from behind the pins show that they end in small, beautifully made loops, indicating that they were more likely ornamental rather than electrical connections, he explained.
If these hieroglyphs could be deciphered they could help Egyptologists work out why these mysterious shafts were built, said engineer Richardson.
The pyramid is thought to have been built as a tomb for the pharaoh Khufu, and is the last of the seven wonders of the ancient world standing still. It contains three main chambers: the Queen's Chamber, the Grand Gallery and the King's Chamber, the report said.