The ‘black hole’ in the Pacific Ocean detected by Google Maps

The ‘black hole’ in the Pacific Ocean detected by Google Maps
The ‘black hole’ in the Pacific Ocean detected by Google Maps

A satellite image taken with the Google Maps tool went viral after being published on the social network Reddit and sparked all kinds of speculation due to its mysterious appearance.

The original image was published without coordinates and curious users soon began to speculate, since the landform looks like a “black hole”.

Later, thanks to the most rigorous investigation of other users who identified the locality on a map, it was learned that in reality its appearance is only an “optical effect”.

But the discussion on social media had already generated countless wild theories.

What do you see

The photo shows a geological formation shaped like an isosceles triangle and surrounded by the indigo blue of the ocean.

The periphery is framed by the white of what appears to be the foam of seawater that is “swallowed” by the dark center of the formation.

Many did not rule out that it was an oceanic black hole, but the explanation was also offered that it could be a underground volcano, whose igneous rocks were the cause of the deep blackness.

“It is obviously the entrance to the hollow Earth,” wrote a user on Reddit, alluding to the theory that within our planet there are subterranean civilizations.

One interpretation was that it was a large lagoon in the center of an island, while another user was convinced that it was the true Bermuda Triangle.

The idea that it was an island took shape in the discussion online, and someone jokingly remarked that the set of the television series had been found Lost (“Lost”), in which survivors of a plane crash are forced to live together on a mysterious island.

Conspiracy theorists pointed out that the island’s darkness was due to the computerized distortion that Google applies when it doesn’t want to show you something.

Vostok Island, Kiribati

Finally, someone simply explained that it was a bad satellite image of an uninhabited island in the Pacific and included a link to the site. GeoEye that shows it clearly.

It is Vostok Island, part of the Republic of Kiribati that is made up of a series of atolls and coral islands.

Named after the Russian explorer Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen’s ship who discovered it in 1820, the island is protected as a sanctuary that houses important colonies of seabirds.

One of the users who identified it writes that there is no evidence that it was colonized by humans at any point in history. “Even the Polynesians overlooked it,” he said.

It also appears that the British only used it to extract copra – the dried pulp of the coconut – and American scientists briefly studied the fauna and flora of the place.

Kiribati and its islands have gained interest within the scientific community investigating climate change.

Getty Images
The islands of Kiribati do not rise more than a few meters above sea level.

It is considered to be the first country in the world to disappear as sea level rises, as a result of global warming that melts glaciers.

According to the latest data, sea level has risen 3.2 millimeters a year since 1993, an increase that, if sustained, will be catastrophic for these islands and other coastal regions over the decades.

Somehow, the apocalyptic image that created so much speculation on social media might not be far off the mark.


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