June 21, 2024

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Eye of the Desert: The giant rock dome in Mauritania that overlooks the desert

Eye of the Desert: The giant rock dome in Mauritania that overlooks the desert

The Eye of the Desert – also known as the Eye of Africa or the Rishat Temple – is a giant rock dome, carved with concentric rings, that looks like a giant bullseye when viewed from above. The eye can be seen from space, and has been known to astronauts and scientists since the first manned missions in the 1950s, according to European Space Agency (ISA).

Estimates of the Ain al-Sahara’s dimensions range from 25 to 31 miles (40 to 50 km) in diameter. The eye forms an almost perfect circle in the Mauritanian desert, which initially led scientists to believe it was the structure of a meteorite impact. However, suffix research I found that the dome was formed by tectonic uplift during the Stone Age Cretaceous period (between 145 and 66 million years ago) and became exposed due to erosion.