The Eighth Wonder of the World reopened


26/02/2011

Scientists who used underwater sensor systems for exploring the lake Rotomohana in New Zealand have found remains of the Pink Terraces, which is called the eighth wonder of the natural world.

Researcher Vicki Ferrini (Vicki Ferrini) conducted in collaboration with colleagues from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute’s work in the area around Rotorua for displaying the bottom of the lake and there is an existing study of the geothermal system. "This is a very active geothermal area: there are rocks steam and hot water, filter to the surface along the edge of the Lake" - said Ferrini. She noted that Rotomahana in Maori means "warm lake".

In the 1880s, tourists were sailing from afar to see the Pink and White Terraces, magic shelf silica formed by geothermally heated water way, shooting of two geysers and falling down a waterfall down into the lake. The eruption of Mount Tarawera in June 1886 terrace engulfed and destroyed nearby villages, killing more than a hundred people. The eruption formed a huge crater, which is filled with water, forming a new lake Rotohamana large sizes.

Until now it was thought that the terraces were lost, but the result of the expedition conducted this month found the remains of the Pink Terraces. The researchers did not find any signs of the White Terraces, which were located on the other side of the lake.

The researchers used a couple of Autonomous Underwater Machines REMUS 100, equipped with sonar and other instruments to collect geophysical data and evaluate the properties of water. Machine in the form of torpedoes crossed up and down the entire lake at a depth of up to 90 meters, they transferred the necessary information to the computers that are on the shore via an acoustic modem at the buoy floating in the middle of the lake.

Role Ferrini was that she had to evaluate sonar data transmitted technique every night to lead the next day’s activities. She now uses the data to create three-dimensional maps of the lake. The researcher said that her curiosity provoked samples rigid material, which she had seen in some of the side sonar scanned images of the west coast, where presumably existed Pink Terraces.

Scientists are lowered to the bottom of the lake camera that took pictures of structures covered with a brownish sludge that were similar to the terraces. The discovery was very important for the local people, especially some members of the Maori whose ancestors were killed by the eruption of Mount Tarawera.

The project leader Cornel de Ronde (Cornel de Ronde) reported that the group was very pleased by the discovery of what was once called the eighth wonder of the natural world.

"The first sonar image gave a hint of the existence of a terraced structure so we scanned the area twice, and now we are 95% confident that what we have seen is the lower two levels of the Pink Terraces."

Dr de Ronde said the rest of the Pink Terraces were either destroyed during the eruption, or are still concealed under thick sediment where the side scan sonar signal can not penetrate.

Researchers hope to come back to the bottom of the lake to further consider the draft and there are structures and perhaps find more evidence of missing terraces.

Original: Physorg Translation: M. Potter


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