Fundamental Research Division
The DRF at the CEA assemble approximately 6,000 scientists since January 2016.
The ScanPyramids collaboration has discovered a new void at the heart of the Pyramid of Cheops. This large void was detected using muon imaging techniques implemented by three separate teams from Nagoya University (Japan), the KEK (Japan), and Irfu. This is the first discovery of a major internal structure within the Pyramid of Cheops since the Middle Ages.
With dimensions close to that of the Grand Gallery (a 47 m long x 8 m high architectural structure located at the heart of the Great Pyramid), this new cavity, named ScanPyramids Big Void, has a minimum length of 30 meters. It was observed for the first time using nuclear emulsion films installed in the Queen's Chamber (University of Nagoya team), and was then detected with a scintillator telescope installed in the same chamber (KEK team). This void was confirmed using Micromegas gaseous detectors located outside of the pyramid and at very different angles of view, making it possible to refine its localization.
This is the first time that an instrument has detected a cavity in the deepest part of a pyramid from the outside.
CEA is a French government-funded technological research organisation in four main areas: low-carbon energies, defense and security, information technologies and health technologies. A prominent player in the European Research Area, it is involved in setting up collaborative projects with many partners around the world.