This Mysterious Stone Is Out of This World, Experts Claim

Mystery

| LAST UPDATE 05/20/2022

by Stanley Wickens
Egypt mystery stone Hypatia
Eric Lafforgue/Art in All of Us / Contributor via Getty Images

It's no secret that the deserts of Egypt hold many mysteries. From the Pyramids of Giza to the mummified bodies that have been perfectly preserved for thousands of years, it's no wonder researchers are still working to learn more about the history of this region. The most recent discovery that has puzzled scientists involves a peculiar stone that might not be from our world...

In 2013, researchers discovered evidence that a stone named Hypatia, found in the Egyptian deserts, may not have formed here on Earth. Ever since then, scientists have been working to figure out the history of the strange stone, whose origins have remained a mystery for more than a decade. Ever since then, the stone has been under a lot of scrutiny, with researchers learning in 2015 that its matter doesn't come from any type of meteorite or comet known to humans. Scientists were baffled...

ancient Egypt mystery stone
p. lubas via Getty Images
Advertisement

They soon realized they needed a different approach to cracking the mystery of how this rock formed. "Rather than exploring all the incredible anomalies Hypatia presents, we wanted to explore if there is an underlying unity. We wanted to see if there is some kind of consistent chemical pattern in the stone," said study co-author Jan Kramers of the University of Johannesburg. Together, he and his colleagues used the chemical makeup and patterning of the rock to build a cosmic timeline stretching back to the early stages of the Earth's formation. That's when they made an astonishing discovery...

The pieces of the Hypatia stone contained particles from the cloud of dust and gas that surround an Ia supernova. "In a sense, we could say, we have caught a supernova Ia explosion in the act because the gas atoms from the explosion were caught in the surrounding dust cloud, which eventually formed Hypatia's parent body," explained Kramers. "If this hypothesis is correct, the Hypatia stone would be the first tangible evidence on Earth of a supernova type Ia explosion." But the enigma of how this stone made it to Earth is ongoing; scientists have yet to determine the source of six of its elements - aluminum, phosphorus, chlorine, potassium, copper, and zinc - which don't match type 1a supernova models. As we wait for these experts to finally solve the puzzle, we only hope our research takes us as far as this unique rock has apparently traveled through space...

Advertisement