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Solved! How Ancient Egyptians Moved Massive Pyramid Stones

Discussion in 'Science & Technology' started by entropy13, May 2, 2014.

  1. entropy13

    entropy13

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    The ancient Egyptians who built the pyramids may have been able to move massive stone blocks across the desert by wetting the sand in front of a contraption built to pull the heavy objects, according to a new study.

    Physicists at the University of Amsterdam investigated the forces needed to pull weighty objects on a giant sled over desert sand, and discovered that dampening the sand in front of the primitive device reduces friction on the sled, making it easier to operate. The findings help answer one of the most enduring historical mysteries: how the Egyptians were able to accomplish the seemingly impossible task of constructing the famous pyramids.

    To make their discovery, the researchers picked up on clues from the ancient Egyptians themselves. A wall painting discovered in the ancient tomb of Djehutihotep, which dates back to about 1900 B.C., depicts 172 men hauling an immense statue using ropes attached to a sledge. In the drawing, a person can be seen standing on the front of the sledge, pouring water over the sand, said study lead author Daniel Bonn, a physics professor at the University of Amsterdam.

    "Egyptologists thought it was a purely ceremonial act," Bonn told Live Science. "The question was: Why did they do it?"

    Bonn and his colleagues constructed miniature sleds and experimented with pulling heavy objects through trays of sand.

    When the researchers dragged the sleds over dry sand, they noticed clumps would build up in front of the contraptions, requiring more force to pull them across.

    Adding water to the sand, however, increased its stiffness, and the sleds were able to glide more easily across the surface. This is because droplets of water create bridges between the grains of sand, which helps them stick together, the scientists said. It is also the same reason why using wet sand to build a sandcastle is easier than using dry sand, Bonn said.


    Full article here.
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  2. rick_48

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    thats not true! they had aliens help them .everybody knows that...lol
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  3. erocker

    erocker Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I don't understand how they claim they solved it. They have no historical data claiming this is how the Egyptians did it. Of course, it is probable....
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  4. micropage7

    micropage7

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    all i can say its one of alternative way to move the stones, some said that they use wood log
    too many mysteries when high civilation suddenly lost
  5. andrewsmc

    andrewsmc

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    Even still, this did not make it easy by any means.
  6. LAN_deRf_HA

    LAN_deRf_HA

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    This story is usually accompanied by the carvings that showed a guy dumping water in front of the sleds. Which led me to wonder how long did they have that depiction and why didn't they make anything of it before.
  7. remixedcat

    remixedcat

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    Nope they are wrong it's
    [​IMG]
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  8. rtwjunkie

    rtwjunkie

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    It's human nature. Many times we dont see things right in front of us for what they are or the clues they give. The one person who suddenly looked for the hundredth time at that same picture probably suddenly had a lightbulb go off in his head and said "I wonder...let's try something."
  9. LAN_deRf_HA

    LAN_deRf_HA

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    I also wondered about the volume of water they'd of had to carry to do this, but it seems likely to me they just saturated the ground along a certain path and kept using, kept hydrating it, possibly night and day. So long term it might not have taken much work to maintain.
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  10. Xzibit

    Xzibit

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    Physical Review Letters - Sliding Friction on Wet and Dry Sand

    They didn't claim it solved it just a possibility.

    It would have been better if they actually did the experiment in Egypt with 30-50 ton limestone instead of a climate control lab with a sand tray. Even then they don't explain how the Egyptians would have been able to tell the balance between not enough water and too much.

    Besides anyone who has seen The Fifth Element knows the Mondoshawan build them with the help of Aziz and his light.
  11. FordGT90Concept

    FordGT90Concept "I go fast!1!11!1!"

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    Remember, this is in a desert and sand is extremely porous. It would take an enormous and constant supply of water to keep the route hydrated. I'm thinking it would require so much as to be an impossibility. Let's also not forget that the people doing the labor themselves need to stay hydrated. They would have to move more water than the stuff they're moving which seems completely unreasonable to me; moreover, I only see one reference to a hieroglyphic of dampening the path. If this was something used in the construction of virtually all pyramids, images of it would be far more widespread. I think the more likely scenario is that they only wetted the path in a few places where the sand was particularly unstable.
    Last edited: May 2, 2014
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  12. LAN_deRf_HA

    LAN_deRf_HA

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    Spot usage would make sense, also I'm wondering if it could be something besides water, like how would oil behave?
  13. entropy13

    entropy13

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    The Nile river's annual flooding is MUCH, MUCH, MUCH, MUCH, more in the past than it is today because until the 20th Century there was no Aswan Dam at all. Bringing water to the general vicinity of the Pyramids is actually easier than getting the stones there to begin with. Thus you'll be doing something easy to help do something hard. They're not going to do something hard to help do something easier...

    Heck one of the tombs (i.e. not a pyramid) near the river still gets some periodic flooding, whether Egypt was under the Romans, the Ottomans, or the British...until the dam was built.
  14. rtwjunkie

    rtwjunkie

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    Which means, following your thought, they would have had to spent every spring hauling massive quantities of stones and staging them near the build site, all before the floods receded.
    It's certainly possible, since they took many years to build.
  15. rick_48

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    they used anti-gravity sleds designed by aliens but built by the techs in Atlantis.

    the weakest link in this theory is human.
  16. RCoon

    RCoon Forum Gypsy

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    The egyptians had slaves in the thousands. Slaves built the pyramids in whatever way possible with deaths in the thousands. Any solution is possible, but basic hard driven slave labor was the overall solution to move big rocks.
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  17. the54thvoid

    the54thvoid

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    Thank goodness someone said it.

    Sad but true. Who built all the great Egyptian buidlings? Slaves. Who built Rome? Slaves. Who made mass tobacco production possible? Slaves.

    Every time I see these things it worries me. All through our petty existence we have used each other to create our 'civilisations'. Even now, in our modern age we depend on cheap labor and very inexpensive cost of human life to produce our western goods.

    Who makes our cheap clothes? May as well be slaves (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2013_Savar_building_collapse)

    Folk love to be fanciful and think we are above our own integrity but when it comes down to it, most of our ancient past is built on slavery and conquest. Our modern day luxuries are built on cheap labor, usually from countries with very poor labor laws and extreme societal poverty.

    Slaves. We still use them. :shadedshu:
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  18. RCoon

    RCoon Forum Gypsy

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    Even computer manufacturer workers do it for pennies on the dollar/pound. Computers of the modern day are identical to the pyramids of the olden times. A smart mind designed them, but the actual creators of these amazing things don't exactly get a great deal of limelight until they're splattered on the pavement. Though they can't do that anymore, since Foxconn implemented safety nets in their factories.
  19. Vario

    Vario

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    [​IMG]
    Looks like hes pouring out bbq sauce out of a squeeze bottle? Did I crack the case?
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  20. RCoon

    RCoon Forum Gypsy

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    His mother's secret recipe for low friction cajun chicken dip. Bad for digestion, terrific lubricant.

    EDIT: As I recall, they did it in stonehenge by using long wooden "rails", only they didn't have wheels. Instead they slit wood along these long wooden planks by using copious amounts of pig fat greese, and an Apex frame pulling system with no more than 100 men.
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  21. rtwjunkie

    rtwjunkie

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    That picture even basically symbolizes the large number of slaves on the project.
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  22. the54thvoid

    the54thvoid

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    Slaves plus oil = pharaoh orgy
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  23. FordGT90Concept

    FordGT90Concept "I go fast!1!11!1!"

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    Who built Washington, D.C.? Slaves.
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