- Granite samples could have been submerged by the Atlantic Ocean when Africa split from South America 100 million years ago
- Geologists have dubbed this mysterious continent the ‘Brazilian Atlantis’
By VICTORIA WOOLLASTON
PUBLISHED: 10:56 EST, 7 May 2013 | UPDATED: 11:42 EST, 7 May 2013
Rocks discovered off the coast of Rio in Brazil could be part of a hidden continent, according to geologists.
The granite samples were found when Brazil’s Geology Service (CPRM) dredged the seabed near the Rio Grande Elevation – a long seismic mountainous ridge that runs along the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.
And now scientists claim the rocks were likely part of a continent that sunk into the ocean when Africa and South America drifted apart 100 million years ago – dubbing the discovery the ‘Brazilian Atlantis’.
Brazil’s Geology Service (CPRM) dredged the seabed by the Rio Grande Elevation almost two years ago so it could analyse the rocks buried there.
A number of granite rocks were among the samples found 900 miles (about 1,500 kilometres) from Rio.
Roberto Ventura Santos, a top official at Brazil’s Geology Service (CPRM), told the G1 website: ‘This could be the Brazilian Atlantis.
‘We are almost certain but we must bolster our hypothesis.
‘We will have final (scientific) recognition this year when we conduct drilling in the area to retrieve more samples of these rocks.’
Last month a team of scientists from Brazil and Japan took a research submersible called the Shinkai 6500 underwater to study the Rio Grande Elevation.
Ventura added that what they saw back up his claims about the ‘Brazilian Atlantis’: ‘We began to see that the area could be a piece of the continent that disappeared into the sea millions of years ago.’
More tests are being carried out on the rocks found, and on the underwater geological formation, to confirm the geologists claims.