Tutankhamun’s breastplate features a scarab carved from Desert Glass. Credit: Wikipedia/J.BodsworthJ.Bodsworth

Carter identified the gemstone at first as chalcedony, a common variety of the mineral quartz. Ten years later the British geographer Patrick Clayton was exploring the Libyan Desert along the border of modern Egypt and Libya. Here he discovered some strange pieces of glass in the sand. The pale yellow in color and translucent material seemed to be identical to the gemstone found in Tutankhamun’s tomb. Two years later he published a short note, suggesting that the pieces of Libyan Desert Glass (LDG) were the quartz-rich deposits of a dry lake. In 1998 Italian mineralogist Vincenzo de Michele analyzed the optical properties of the gemstone in King Tut’s breastplate and confirmed that it was indeed a piece of LDG.

A piece of Lybian Desert Glass. Credit: Wikipedia/H. Raab CC BY-SA 3.0.H.Raab

LDG is almost pure silicon-dioxide, like quartz, but its crystal structure is different. It also contains in traces an unusual combination of elements, like iron, nickel, chromium, cobalt and iridium. It is among the rarest minerals on Earth as it is found only in the Great Sand Sea north of the Gilf Kebir Plateau, one of the most remote and desolate areas in the Libyan Desert. The origin of desert glass remains uncertain. Glass forms in nature when quartz-rich rocks melt and rapidly cool. Tektites are natural glass formed from terrestrial debris ejected high into Earth’s atmosphere during meteorite impacts. Tektites have been found across Asia, Australia and as far away as Antarctica. If the LDG is a tektite, it formed 28 to 26 million years ago when an impact melted the quartz-rich sand of the desert. The unusual elements found in the LDG are explained as traces of the vaporized meteorite. However, no impact crater was ever found in the Libyan Desert. In an alternative scenario a comet, composed mostly of ice, exploded above the desert. The generated heat burst, with estimated 3,600°F, was sufficient to melt the upper layers of the sand dunes, forming the desert glass, but didn’t leave a crater behind.

It remains also uncertain how the desert glass became part of Tutankhamun’s treasures. Today caravans rarely cross the Great Sand Sea. Archaeological evidence suggests that an ancient system of caravan routes existed around the Gilf Kebir Plateau, but it doesn’t seem that the routes were used to search or trade for desert glass. The scarab in the breastplate remains a unique anomaly, the only known example where an Egyptian artist used this alien material.

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On 4 November 1922, a young boy unintentionally discovered a stone that ended up being the top of a flight of actions cut into the bedrock of the Valley of the Kings. The Valley of the Kings is a remote valley situated in the desert west of the river Nile. In Pharaonic Egypt, this valley was thought about the land of the dead and lots of pharaohs were buried here. In 1922 British archaeologist Howard Carter was browsing here the burial place of Tutankhamun, a reasonably small pharaoh judgment over Egypt from 1332 to 1323 BCE.

One month later on Carter went into the burial place. Asked if he might see anything in the burial chamber, Carter supposedly reacted: ” Yes, terrific things.” Tutankhamun’s burial place was filled with statues made from ivory, valuable fashion jewelry and even a total golden chariot. In one treasure chest, Carter found a big breastplate, embellished with gold, silver, numerous valuable gems and an odd gems. The breastplate reveals the god Ra as a winged scarab, made from the yellow, clear gems, bring the celestial bark with the Sun and the Moon into the sky.

(*********** )Tutankhamun’s breastplate includes a scarab sculpted from Desert Glass. Credit: Wikipedia/J. Bodsworth J.Bodsworth

Carter determined the gems in the beginning as chalcedony, a typical range of the mineral quartz 10 years later on the British geographer Patrick Clayton was checking out the Libyan Desert along the border of modern-day Egypt and Libya. Here he found some unusual pieces of glass in the sand. The pale yellow in color and clear product appeared to be similar to the gems discovered in Tutankhamun’s burial place. 2 years later on he released a brief note, recommending that the pieces of Libyan Desert Glass (LDG) were the quartz-rich deposits of a dry lake. In 1998 Italian mineralogist Vincenzo de Michele examined the optical homes of the gems in King Tut’s breastplate and verified that it was undoubtedly a piece of LDG.

(** )

(******** )(********* )(*********** )A piece of Lybian Desert Glass. Credit: Wikipedia/H. Raab CC BY-SA 3.0.(************ )H.Raab(************* )(** )(************** )(******* )

(* )LDG is nearly pure silicon-dioxide, like quartz, however its crystal structure is various. It likewise includes in traces an uncommon mix of components, like iron, nickel, chromium, cobalt and iridium. It is amongst the rarest minerals in the world as it is discovered just in the Great Sand Sea north of the Gilf Kebir Plateau, among the most remote and desolate locations in the Libyan Desert. The origin of desert glass stays unsure. Glass kinds in nature when quartz-rich rocks melt and quickly cool. Tektites are natural glass formed from terrestrial particles ejected high into Earth’s environment throughout meteorite effects. Tektites have actually been discovered throughout Asia, Australia and as far as Antarctica. If the LDG is a tektite, it formed 28 to 26 million years earlier when an effect melted the quartz-rich sand of the desert. The uncommon components discovered in the LDG are described as traces of the vaporized meteorite. Nevertheless, no effect crater was ever discovered in the Libyan Desert. In an alternative situation a comet, made up mainly of ice, blew up above the desert. The created heat burst, with approximated 3,600 ° F, sufficed to melt the upper layers of the dune, forming the desert glass, however didn’t leave a crater behind.

It stays likewise unsure how the desert glass entered into Tutankhamun’s treasures. Today caravans hardly ever cross the Excellent Sand Sea. Historical proof recommends that an ancient system of caravan paths existed around the Gilf Kebir Plateau, however it does not appear that the paths were utilized to browse or trade for desert glass. The scarab in the breastplate stays a special abnormality, the just recognized example where an Egyptian artist utilized this alien product.

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599673647″ >

On 4 November 1922, a young boy unintentionally discovered a stone that ended up being the top of a flight of actions cut into the bedrock of the Valley of the Kings. The Valley of the Kings is a remote valley situated in the desert west of the river Nile. In Pharaonic Egypt, this valley was thought about the land of the dead and lots of pharaohs were buried here. In 1922 British archaeologist Howard Carter was browsing here the burial place of Tutankhamun, a reasonably small pharaoh judgment over Egypt from 1332 to 1323 BCE.

One month later on Carter went into the burial place. Asked if he might see anything in the burial chamber, Carter supposedly reacted: “Yes, terrific things.” Tutankhamun’s burial place was filled with statues made from ivory, valuable fashion jewelry and even a total golden chariot. In one treasure chest, Carter found a big breastplate, embellished with gold, silver, numerous valuable gems and an odd gems. The breastplate reveals the god Ra as a winged scarab, made from the yellow, clear gems, bring the celestial bark with the Sun and the Moon into the sky.

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Tutankhamun’s breastplate includes a scarab sculpted from Desert Glass. Credit: Wikipedia/J. Bodsworth J.Bodsworth

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Carter determined the gems in the beginning as chalcedony, a typical range of the mineral quartz 10 years later on the British geographer Patrick Clayton was checking out the Libyan Desert along the border of modern-day Egypt and Libya. Here he found some unusual pieces of glass in the sand. The pale yellow in color and clear product appeared to be similar to the gems discovered in Tutankhamun’s burial place. 2 years later on he released a brief note, recommending that the pieces of Libyan Desert Glass (LDG) were the quartz-rich deposits of a dry lake. In 1998 Italian mineralogist Vincenzo de Michele examined the optical homes of the gems in King Tut’s breastplate and verified that it was undoubtedly a piece of LDG.

LDG is nearly pure silicon-dioxide, like quartz, however its crystal structure is various. It likewise includes in traces an uncommon mix of components, like iron, nickel, chromium, cobalt and iridium. It is amongst the rarest minerals in the world as it is discovered just in the Great Sand Sea north of the Gilf Kebir Plateau, among the most remote and desolate locations in the Libyan Desert. The origin of desert glass stays unsure. Glass kinds in nature when quartz-rich rocks melt and quickly cool. Tektites are natural glass formed from terrestrial particles ejected high into Earth’s environment throughout meteorite effects. Tektites have actually been discovered throughout Asia, Australia and as far as Antarctica. If the LDG is a tektite, it formed 28 to 26 million years earlier when an effect melted the quartz-rich sand of the desert. The uncommon components discovered in the LDG are described as traces of the vaporized meteorite. Nevertheless, no effect crater was ever discovered in the Libyan Desert. In an alternative situation a comet, made up mainly of ice, blew up above the desert. The created heat burst, with approximated 3, 600 ° F, sufficed to melt the upper layers of the dune, forming the desert glass, however didn’t leave a crater behind.

It stays likewise unsure how the desert glass entered into Tutankhamun’s treasures. Today caravans hardly ever cross the Excellent Sand Sea. Historical proof recommends that an ancient system of caravan paths existed around the Gilf Kebir Plateau, however it does not appear that the paths were utilized to browse or trade for desert glass. The scarab in the breastplate stays a special abnormality, the just recognized example where an Egyptian artist utilized this alien product.

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