A massive underwater coral structure that would dwarf the world’s iconic skyscrapers has been discovered near Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.
First spotted on October 20 by scientists mapping the ocean floor, the 1,600 foot-tall, detached reef is the largest to have been discovered in over a century.
Measuring almost a mile wide at its base, the tip of the reef rises to 130 feet beneath the ocean’s surface.
Expedition leader Robin Beaman, from James Cook University, said in a statement, “We are surprised and elated by what we have found”.
Beaman’s research vessel is from the Schmidt Ocean Institute, whose executive director Jyotika Virmani said: “To find a new, half-a-kilometre tall reef in the offshore Cape York area of the well-recognised Great Barrier Reef shows how mysterious the world is just beyond our coastline”.