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150,000-Year-Old Pipes Baffle Scientists in China: Out of Place in Time?

A file photo of a pipe, and a view of Qinghai Lake in China, near which mysterious iron pipes were found. (NASA; Pipe image via Shutterstock*)

The universe is full of mysteries that challenge our current knowledge.

In a mysterious pyramid in China’s Qinghai Province near Mount Baigong are three caves filled with pipes leading to a nearby salt-water lake. There are also pipes under the lake bed and on the shore. The iron pipes range in size, with some smaller than a toothpick. The strangest part is that they may be about 150,000 years old.

Dating done by the Beijing Institute of Geology determined these iron pipes were smelted about 150,000 years ago, if they were indeed made by humans, according to Brian Dunning of Skeptoid.com.

And if they were made by humans, history as it is commonly viewed would have to be reevaluated.

The dating was done using thermoluminescence, a technique that determines how long ago crystalline mineral was exposed to sunlight or heated. Humans are only thought to have inhabited the region for the past 30,000 years. Even within the known history of the area, the only humans to inhabit the region were nomads whose lifestyle would not leave any such structures behind.

Source: EpochTimes Read more

How old are false teeth?

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Grave find may be Western Europe’s earliest false tooth

The iron pin may once have held a false tooth, but it’s impossible to know for sure

Archaeologists have identified what could be remains of the earliest false tooth found in Western Europe.

The dental implant comes from the richly-furnished timber burial chamber of an Iron Age woman that was excavated in Le Chene, northern France.

The woman, who was between 20 and 30 years old when she died, had an iron pin in place of an upper incisor tooth.

It is possible the pin once held a false tooth made from either wood or bone, which could have rotted away.

The findings have been published in the scholarly journal Antiquity.

The grave was one of four adult female burials in an enclosure dating to the third century BC that were discovered during the construction of a housing development in the Champagne-Ardenne region.

The burials, which contained a rich array of grave goods, show all the hallmarks of the Celtic La Tene culture, which flourished across Central and Western Europe at the time.

“The skeleton was very badly preserved,” Guillaume Seguin, who excavated the young woman’s skeleton in 2009, told BBC News.

“But the teeth were in an anatomical position, with the molars, pre-molars, canines and incisors. Then there was this piece of metal. My first reaction was: what is this?”

The teeth were bagged and taken away for analysis. Mr Seguin later realised that the woman had 31 rather than 32 teeth, and photos taken at the excavation site show the iron pin in the place where the missing tooth would have been.

This photo shows the teeth in position during excavation. The iron pin is visible on the left

“The fact that it has the same dimensions and shape as the teeth means that the best hypothesis is that it was a dental prosthesis – or at least, an attempt at one,” said Mr Seguin, from the Bordeaux-based archaeology firm Archeosphere.

There are reasons to doubt whether it was successful, says Mr Seguin. Firstly, the propensity for iron to corrode inside the body makes it unsuitable for use as a dental implant; titanium is the material of choice today for modern versions.

Secondly, the absence of sterile conditions during this period mean the pin could have caused an abscess, followed by an infection that could potentially have ended the individual’s life.

However, the poor preservation of the remains means it is impossible to say whether the implant played any role in the woman’s death.

While the find may be the earliest dental implant known from Western Europe, prosthetic teeth dating back 5,500 years have been found in Egypt and the Near East.

Source: BBC News – Read more

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