40°25’39.58″ N 93°33’28.70″ E

In the middle of nowhere they date back to the early 2000s. But these lines are still very well preserved. They measure around 70 feet wide (21,3 metres). Oblique lines configuring two main gigantic structural grids that cover around 1 square mile each, made to be seen from above. One of them is framed in a rectangular shape. For the other one, they might have realized that it was not necessary any frame. Instead, they drastically increased its Albedo (light reflectivity coefficient) through a highly reflective mineral composition. This fact together with the alignment of both mega-structures with seasonal alluvial flows lead to different speculations on their actual function, either related to war, power or natural resources (issues which surprisingly tend to be linked altogether):

(a) Calibrate optics for Chinese satellites or even weapons.

(b) Geo-engineering attempts to guide or redirect the unpredictable alluvial fans caused by water flow through the desert.

(c) Assist in mining exploration guidance by discovering the flow patterns of alluvial gold, silver, platinum or other metal/mineral deposits. Which for me appears to be the most plausible hypothesis.

The decay of the lines is not simply due to natural abandonment but a way to be easily monitored from above. Are we assisting to a gold rush in the Gobi Desert? The region of nearby Altay Mountain (“the place producing gold”) has over 138 ores located in the same area. Vehicle tracks and tailings reveal the trace of intensive mining operations. If that were the case, it would be all about humans modifying a landscape to observe how it changes; watching the metamorphosis of the metamorphosis.

Looking forward to what the alteration of the image of the territory eventually unearths.

Thanks, laura!

[speculations & images via quora]

One Comment

  1. I think it’s just Andy Goldsworthy messing around…

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