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Ancient Egypt's Pyramids: Norwegian Researcher Unlocks Construction Secrets
Science Daily ^ | 24 Sep 2010 | Science Daily

Posted on 09/25/2010 1:07:46 AM PDT by Palter

Scientists from around the world have tried to understand how the Egyptians erected their giant pyramids. Now, an architect and researcher at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) says he has the answer to this ancient, unsolved puzzle.

Researchers have been so preoccupied by the weight of the stones that they tend to overlook two major problems: How did the Egyptians know exactly where to put the enormously heavy building blocks? And how was the master architect able to communicate detailed, highly precise plans to a workforce of 10,000 illiterate men?

A 7-million-ton structure

These were among the questions that confronted Ole J. Bryn, an architect and associate professor in NTNU's Faculty of Architecture and Fine Art when he began examining Khufu's Great Pyramid in Giza. Khufu's pyramid, better known as the Pyramid of Cheops, consists of 2.3 million limestone blocks weighing roughly 7 million tons. At 146.6 meters high, it held the record as the tallest structure ever built for nearly 4000 years.

What Bryn discovered was quite simple. He believes that the Egyptians invented the modern building grid, by separating the structure's measuring system from the physical building itself, thus introducing tolerance, as it is called in today's engineering and architectural professions.

The apex point a key

Bryn has studied the plans from the thirty oldest Egyptian pyramids, and discovered a precision system that made it possible for the Egyptians to reach the pyramid's last and highest point, the apex point, with an impressive degree of accuracy. By exploring and making a plan of the pyramid it is possible to prepare modern project documentation of not just one, but all pyramids from any given period.

(Excerpt) Read more at sciencedaily.com ...


TOPICS: History
KEYWORDS: egypt; ggg; giza; godsgravesglyphs; greatpyramid; norway; pyramid
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1 posted on 09/25/2010 1:07:49 AM PDT by Palter
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To: SunkenCiv

Another theory, ping.


2 posted on 09/25/2010 1:08:26 AM PDT by Palter (If voting made any difference they wouldn't let us do it. ~ Mark Twain)
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To: Palter

Slave labor. Most infants can construct a pyramid out of sand. Many will with no outside help. These people had backs to break, and I’m sure they broke them.


3 posted on 09/25/2010 1:10:40 AM PDT by allmost
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To: Palter
And how was the master architect able to communicate detailed, highly precise plans to a workforce of 10,000 illiterate men?

The same way liberals communicate to their supporters. Duh...
4 posted on 09/25/2010 1:13:47 AM PDT by pennyfarmer (Even a RINO will chew its foot off when caught in a trap.)
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To: allmost
Some say that the slave labor, were merely skilled labor.
5 posted on 09/25/2010 1:14:23 AM PDT by Palter (If voting made any difference they wouldn't let us do it. ~ Mark Twain)
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To: Palter

Looks like a pyramid scheme to me.


6 posted on 09/25/2010 1:15:48 AM PDT by bunkerhill7
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To: Palter

With all the slaves available. Why would the Egyptians pay for the general labor? They were moving rocks. Cut rocks yes but still rocks.


7 posted on 09/25/2010 1:18:07 AM PDT by allmost
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To: bunkerhill7

LOL, but yes, the Pyramids do look to have been a Pyramid scheme.

The Pharoah got his ‘resurrection machine’ built for him (no mere tomb but a way to the next life).

And the laborers not only ate very well for people in the ancient world, but when they died they were buried in choice locations near the Pyramid so that they could join in the Pharoah’s eternal life.

(Disclaimer: all of the above is informed surmise, not established fact)


8 posted on 09/25/2010 1:41:42 AM PDT by agere_contra (...what if we won't eat the dog food?)
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To: Palter

Were the Hebrew slaves illiterate?


9 posted on 09/25/2010 2:10:08 AM PDT by skr (May God confound the enemy)
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To: Palter
The pyramid blocks were most likely poured. That is, they took wagon-loads of stone (of a reasonable size) from the quarry, poured same into formers, and then poured some liquid binding agent into the frame so that it hardened into a block. Trying to carve fitting stones from a quarry would waste 2/3 of the material and quickly turn the quarry into a heap of rubble.

The word 'pyramid' is a Greek word, the root part being the familiar 'pyr' (fire) which we also see in words like 'pyrotechnics', 'pyromaniac' etc. They originally had golden tips and acted like lightning rods, generating what you'd call St. Elmo's fire, which served for religious purposes.

10 posted on 09/25/2010 2:29:50 AM PDT by wendy1946
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To: skr

“Were the Hebrew slaves illiterate?”

Yes, they spoke from right to left.


11 posted on 09/25/2010 2:35:24 AM PDT by BuddhaBrown (Path to enlightenment: Four right turns, then go straight until you see the Light!)
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To: wendy1946
The pyramid blocks were most likely poured.

Gee, it seems to me that it should be easy to prove, or disprove, your theory - simply by examining the limestone blocks to see if they are composed of rubble cemented together.

Do you suppose that any archeologists have ever bothered to do that?

Regards,

12 posted on 09/25/2010 2:38:31 AM PDT by alexander_busek
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To: alexander_busek
They have. They find human hair, rope fragments and what not inside the blocks when they break them up with hammers.
13 posted on 09/25/2010 2:56:47 AM PDT by wendy1946
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To: alexander_busek

That also explains the ungodly tight fits of the blocks, it’s what you’d EXPECT from pouring the things.


14 posted on 09/25/2010 2:58:13 AM PDT by wendy1946
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To: wendy1946

That is one heck of a pour to last thousands of years. The exterior forms would be ridiculously complicated as well. The exterior shows individual blocks.


15 posted on 09/25/2010 2:59:44 AM PDT by allmost
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To: allmost

It appears as if ancient Egyptions as well as whoever built Puma Punku may have had technologies for working with stone which would have been beyond what we have. They actually had vases made of diurite, which is not much different from making a vase out of solid diamond.


16 posted on 09/25/2010 3:10:07 AM PDT by wendy1946
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To: allmost

I read about the quarries upstream of the pyramid sites where unfinished stones are still insitu. I think that they used ropes pulled thru the cut with grit on the rope to do the cutting.


17 posted on 09/25/2010 3:12:27 AM PDT by Thebaddog (Shakey Jake said, " The hippies will never survive!")
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To: wendy1946
I'm not familiar with diurite. What's the chemistry there?
18 posted on 09/25/2010 3:18:17 AM PDT by allmost
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To: Thebaddog

Considering the volume and timescale they probably used multiple methods. Steam fracturing and grinding from slave labor would be my best guess. It doesn’t sound pretty because it is not.


19 posted on 09/25/2010 3:21:51 AM PDT by allmost
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To: Palter

It seems to me we still have no idea HOW they moved the blocks into place, or WHO built it. Christopher Dunn, in the “Giza Power Plant”, (Amazon) explained WHAT it is


20 posted on 09/25/2010 3:37:07 AM PDT by The Wizard (Madam President is my President now and in the future)
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To: allmost
I'm not familiar with diurite. What's the chemistry there?

I think the poster meant diorite.

21 posted on 09/25/2010 3:38:59 AM PDT by snowsislander (In this election year, please ask your candidates if they support repeal of the 1968 GCA.)
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To: wendy1946

http://www.materials.drexel.edu/Pyramids/


22 posted on 09/25/2010 3:47:16 AM PDT by EVO X
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To: snowsislander

Thank you for the clarification. Extra hard granite with sporadic impurities. I can’t imagine hand grinding a vase out of that. In my pampered modern existence it seems almost sadistic.


23 posted on 09/25/2010 3:49:32 AM PDT by allmost
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To: skr; allmost

I don’t believe they were slaves — it took 20 years to build the grand pyramid of Khufu and this suggests that it was more during the Niles flooding season when farmers had free time, when they were involved in this national building. The population of ancient Egypt c. 2200 BC wouldn’t have had enough to sustain a large population of slaves. Also, these weren’t Hebrew or Semitic — they would come later during the time of the Hyksos


24 posted on 09/25/2010 3:53:40 AM PDT by Cronos (This Church is holy, the one Church, the true Church, the Catholic Church-St.Augustine)
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To: Palter; wendy1946; allmost
or, there's an alternate theory :)

Dinosaurs helped build the pyramids, school director says

25 posted on 09/25/2010 3:58:04 AM PDT by Cronos (This Church is holy, the one Church, the true Church, the Catholic Church-St.Augustine)
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To: Cronos
Egypt was a society filled with slaves. I've heard the attempts at rewriting history, paid for by the Egyptian government, by Hawass. To say they weren't utilized sounds a bit ludicrous.
26 posted on 09/25/2010 3:59:18 AM PDT by allmost
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To: Cronos

Barney’s got a cool hat. :)


27 posted on 09/25/2010 4:00:44 AM PDT by allmost
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To: allmost
One method not mentioned here is copper saw blades, they were used to cut flint that was then pressure flaked to produce some of the most beautiful blades known. Limestone wouldn't be much of a problem. These flint blades came from Egypt. Photobucket Photobucket
28 posted on 09/25/2010 4:04:39 AM PDT by Dusty Road
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To: allmost

I believe he is saying each individual block was poured.regards!!


29 posted on 09/25/2010 4:22:28 AM PDT by ontap
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To: wendy1946
i'd love to see a strength test... poured anything with that much weight on top of it and not crumbling
30 posted on 09/25/2010 5:43:43 AM PDT by Chode (American Hedonist *DTOM* -ww- NO Pity for the LAZY)
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To: allmost

No doubt Egypt had a lot of slaves. That they were used exclusively on the pyramids seems unlikely. As others have pointed out, there are long periods in the Egyptian year when the farmers (the vast majority of the people) were sitting around with nothing to do.

Why not apply a labor tax to them and get some good out of this otherwise wasted (from Pharoah’s perspective) time? Meanwhile his slaves, a capital investment, probably had other regular duties.


31 posted on 09/25/2010 5:46:31 AM PDT by Sherman Logan
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To: Palter; StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; 1010RD; 21twelve; 24Karet; 2ndDivisionVet; 31R1O; ..

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Thanks Palter. He hasn't really shown anything, other than a need for modern cranes in ancient Egypt. :')

great pyramid site:freerepublic.com
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32 posted on 09/25/2010 6:02:49 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (Democratic Underground... matters are worse, as their latest fund drive has come up short...)
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To: Sherman Logan

Maybe they imported Illegals. ;0)


33 posted on 09/25/2010 6:42:50 AM PDT by seemoAR
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To: Dusty Road; Palter; allmost; Cronos

What method was used to construct the pyramids in Mexico? Are the construction techniques similar or identical?


34 posted on 09/25/2010 7:13:10 AM PDT by NYer ("God dwells in our midst, in the Blessed Sacrament of the altar." St. Maximilian Kolbe)
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To: Palter
The REAL secret of the pyramids...


35 posted on 09/25/2010 7:23:31 AM PDT by Fresh Wind (King: "I have a dream"...Sharpton: "I want a check")
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To: Dusty Road

Saw some of those blades in the Louvre. They are fantastic.


36 posted on 09/25/2010 9:37:56 AM PDT by bigheadfred (We built a tower of stone. With our flesh and bone. Just to see him fly .)
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To: wendy1946

Your link goes to a google search page which does not show one reputable scholarly source, only links to people talking on forums and something from “Associated Content,” which publishes pretty much anything anybody wants to write, with or without substantiation. I see nothing verifiable there. Do you have some more credible source?


37 posted on 09/25/2010 9:52:18 AM PDT by ottbmare (off-the-track Thoroughbred mare)
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To: SunkenCiv; EVO X; Palter; nuconvert

This is against the thinking of our “friend”:

Zahi Hawass, head of the Supreme Council of Antiquities in Egypt, minced no words in assailing the concrete idea. “It’s highly stupid,” he said via a spokesman. “The pyramids are made from solid blocks of quarried limestone. To suggest otherwise is idiotic and insulting.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/23/world/africa/23iht-pyramid.1.12259608.html?_r=1&pagewanted=2


38 posted on 09/25/2010 9:59:42 AM PDT by AdmSmith (GCTGATATGTCTATGATTACTCAT)
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To: ottbmare

Try the link at #22 http://www.materials.drexel.edu/Pyramids/


39 posted on 09/25/2010 10:01:40 AM PDT by AdmSmith (GCTGATATGTCTATGATTACTCAT)
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To: AdmSmith

Thanks! Looks interesting.


40 posted on 09/25/2010 10:03:51 AM PDT by ottbmare (off-the-track Thoroughbred mare)
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To: skr

Probably the majority were.


41 posted on 09/25/2010 11:17:24 AM PDT by kabumpo (Kabumpo)
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To: EVO X

Thanks!!


42 posted on 09/25/2010 12:01:16 PM PDT by wendy1946
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To: bigheadfred
I've seen and held polymer castings of a 14 inch blade found in Giza, would love to see the real thing.

This link explains allot.

43 posted on 09/25/2010 12:12:56 PM PDT by Dusty Road
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To: sauropod

read


44 posted on 09/25/2010 12:14:24 PM PDT by sauropod (The truth shall make you free but first it will make you miserable.)
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To: Palter

The blocks are concrete poured in place.


45 posted on 09/25/2010 12:38:41 PM PDT by stockpirate ("......When the government fears the people you have liberty." Thomas Jefferson)
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To: Dusty Road

I guess adding the link would help!

http://www.reshafim.org.il/ad/egypt/trades/tools.htm


46 posted on 09/25/2010 12:48:39 PM PDT by Dusty Road
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To: agere_contra

Name that Pharoah... who was actually interered in any pyramid...


47 posted on 09/25/2010 3:46:15 PM PDT by PIF (They came for me and mine .. now it is your turn..)
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To: EVO X
“Professor Michel Barsoum, Distinguished Professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at Drexel University, and colleagues have found scientific evidence that parts of the Great Pyramids of Giza were built using an early form of concrete, debunking an age old myth that they were built using only cut limestone blocks.”

In other words, some other material was used in some places, but most was built using limestone blocks. Article goes on: to save the planet from AGW use these methods...

48 posted on 09/25/2010 3:55:16 PM PDT by PIF (They came for me and mine .. now it is your turn..)
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To: allmost
“I can’t imagine hand grinding a vase out of that”

Now imagine building an entire “city” (Puma Punku) out of it by hand... complete with precise channel cuts forming an interlocking complex of blocks both solid and with excavated designs for purposes as yet unknown.

49 posted on 09/25/2010 3:59:19 PM PDT by PIF (They came for me and mine .. now it is your turn..)
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To: Palter

The book “The Pyramids: An Enigma Solved” by Joseph Davidovits was first published around 1989 and addressed the subject of the stone blocks of the pyramids being cast in place rather than being quarried. The author made some very interesting and compelling arguments in favor.

The author also addressed the monoliths of the temple at Baalbek in Lebanon, where one of the stones that forms the foundation of the temple is 1200 tons. The author argues that there was no possible mechanism in the ancient world to move an object of this size and weight and this is further confirmation that the cast-in-place method was in use in the Middle East at that time.

There are some problems with his theory, as would be expected, the details of which I won’t go into. The best overall discussion of a possible history of the pyramids that I’ve read so far is “Pyramid Quest” by Dr. Robert Schoch. Schoch is a geologist who was pilloried by the Egyptology community twenty years ago for making the obvious and simple observation that there is evidence of water erosion on the Sphinx. Schoch argues that the pyramids (and the Sphinx) greatly predate the Old Kingdom and were built in stages over a very long period of time, probably millenia. No supernatural agents, aliens or any other deus ex machina figure in Schoch’s theory.

One of the most interesting arguments about the age and building of the pyramids was made to me by an investment banker. He said that we should get an estimate of how much it would cost to build the pyramid today and then multiply that cost by the labor efficiency we have today versus that of third millennium BC Egypt. He speculated it would cost at least several billion dollars today and that the the economic output per person back then was probably one one hundredth of what it is today. The several hundred billion dollar effective cost of construction of the pyramid would have consumed a large multiple of the entire GDP of Egypt of that era for decades and possibly centuries, to the exclusion of all other economic activity, all for a project with no identifiable economic benefits.

The theory has been around forever that the pyramid workers were idle farmers in the off season. The problem is in a subsistence existence, there is no idle season. If the Egyptian farmers were not planting, weeding and irrigating or harvesting, then they were making or repairing their tools and domiciles, fishing, making pottery and baskets, etc. The same argument applies to slave laborers. Slaves have to be economically productive just like free men and all the time.

The conventional wisdom on a lot of things, including Egyptology, congealed about a century ago and have been largely immovable ever since. Since I developed an interest in these matters the thing I’ve found most interesting is how very thin the gruel is on which this conventional wisdom is founded, this just being one example. Part of that conventional wisdom that should be discarded is that the pyramids were built in a very limited time window with very limited resources during the Old Kingdom of Egypt.


50 posted on 09/25/2010 4:50:06 PM PDT by KamperKen
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