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3 Billion Year Old 'Lost Continent' Found Under Mauritius in The Indian Ocean

The continent was supposedly formed at the time of the breakup of ‘Gondwana’ supercontinent which happened around 200 million years back.

News18.com

Updated:February 3, 2017, 6:19 PM IST
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3 Billion Year Old 'Lost Continent' Found Under Mauritius in The Indian Ocean
Scientists have discovered a lost continent under in the India Ocean under Mauritius. (Image: REUTERS/Jacky Naegelen)
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A team of scientists have discovered a ‘lost continent’ lurking under the island of Mauritius.

The continent was supposedly formed at the time of the breakup of ‘Gondwana’ supercontinent which happened around 200 million years back.

A team led by Professor Lewis Ashwal, from the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa, studied the mineral contents found in the rocks which were expelled from volcanic eruptions on the island.

The results found after studying the mineral, zircon, showed that the mineral was way too old than the island of Mauritius itself.

While there are no rocks on the island of Mauritius which are older than 9 million years, the zircons found on the island were traced back to 3 billion years in the past.

The ancient continent is thought to be formed at the time when Australia, Africa, India and Antarctica split up from the Gondwana supercontinent.

Professor Ashwal hints at other such pieces of undiscovered landmass of various sizes spread across the India Ocean.

Such geological data can be recovered from the study of minerals like Zircons as they survive the geological transformations very well and can be accurately dated.

Also read: Meteorite in Africa Hints at 2 Billion Years of Volcanic Activity on Mars

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