An aerial view of a natural lake fed by a spring in the Amazon River basin near Manaus
An aerial view of a natural lake fed by a spring in the Amazon River basin Reuters

Have you heard of a river flowing under a river? In an amazing discovery, scientists have found signs of an underground river flowing below the Amazon.

Researchers at the department of geophysics of the Brazil National Observatory have showed evidence of the existence of an underground river that flows 13,000 feet beneath the Amazon.

The underground river is now named after Valiya Hamza, the scientist of Indian origin,who has been studying the Amazon region for more than 40 years. The discovery is part of the work of doctoral student Elizabeth Tavares Pimentel, under the guidance of Hamza.

The findings show that the Amazon, one of the longest rivers in the world, has two drainage systems: the surface drainage through the Amazon and the flow of groundwater through the deep sedimentary layers, the Hamza.

The width of the Hamza is said to be 3,700 miles long, flowing 13,000 feet below the Amazon. Both rivers flow from west to east, but the Hamza flows at only a fraction of the speed of Amazon.

It is likely that this river is responsible for the low level of salinity in the waters around the mouth of the Amazon, said a statement released by the National Observatory.

The latest findings are based on data analysis temperatures of 241 wells drilled by Petrobas in the 1970s and 1980s in the Amazon region. The results obtained allowed the identification of movement of groundwater in depths of 4,000 meters in this region.

Computer simulations show that the groundwater flow is predominantly vertical to about 2,000 feet deep, but changes direction and becomes horizontal at greater depths.

Though the studies are in the early stages, Hamza expects to confirm the subterranean flow by the end of 2014.

Amazon is the second longest river in the world and has the largest drainage basin in the world. The bulk of Amazon, which accounts for about one-fifth of the world's total river flow, flows through tropical rainforest. The river merges in to the Atlantic Ocean in a broad estuary about 150 miles wide.

Here is the video explaining the amazing discovery of the underground river beneath Amazon: