A group of Brazilian and Japanese scientists working on the South Atlantic seabed have found continental rocks that could be remains of the so-called lost continent.
Using a submersible capable of descending to depths of 6,500 meters and collecting samples, they have discovered a granite formation on the Rio Grande Elevation, a rise on the ocean floor about 1,500 km southeast of Rio de Janeiro.
According to geologists, as a result of tectonic movements, a land mass which was once above sea level could have sunk into the ocean during the separation of Pangaea, the name given to the giant landmass that existed at the end of the Paleozoic era and whose division formed the continents today known.
Roberto Ventura, geologist: “When these samples came aboard the ship, the first surprise was, what are these rocks doing here? We did petrographic, geochemical and geological studies of this material. At the time we came up with the study results – which even then was an unexpected surprise for us – plus the fact that it was in the Rio Grande Rise region, which is a rise with shallower water and with lower gravimetric density than normal oceanic crust made us start to think it was continental crust.”
The submersible the scientists are using has barely enough room for just three people, just two pilots and a scientist. It is equipped with a powerful mechanic arm, able to collect samples.
The question now is could their discovery be the fabled metropolis of Atlantis, described nearly 2,600 years ago by Greek philosopher Plato and vanished forever beneath the sea?