Scientists have just discovered the first coral reef to be in 120 years time. The Schmidt Ocean Institute located the natural structure in the Great Barrier Reef earlier this week.
Australian scientists found the reef while aboard the research vessel Falkor. It is over 500 meters high, and the base of the blade-like reef is 1 mile wide.
This reef is one of eight total tall detached reefs discovered in the area, having been mapped since the late 1800s.
“This unexpected discovery affirms that we continue to find unknown structures and new species in our Ocean,” said Wendy Schmidt, co-founder of Schmidt Ocean Institute. “The state of our knowledge about what’s in the Ocean has long been so limited. Thanks to new technologies that work as our eyes, ears and hands in the deep ocean, we have the capacity to explore like never before..."
Schmidt Ocean Institute has been making a whole slew of discoveries this year. In April, the scientists discovered the longest recorded sea creature measuring in at 45 meters along with 30 new species. They've also discovered five new species of black coral and sponges, Australia's first observation of rare scorpionfish, and deep sea coral gardens and graveyards.
The Falkor vessel is currently on a 12-month exploration of the ocean surrounding Australia, which will continue on through November 17th.