Scans of King Tutankhamun's Tomb May Have Revealed Nefertiti's Burial Site

Egypt Mummy King Tutankhamum Luxor
The golden sarcophagus of King Tutankhamun in his burial chamber in the Valley of the Kings, in Luxor, Egypt, November 28, 2015. Mohamed Abd El Ghany/Reuters

The Egyptian antiquities minister said on Thursday that radar scans of King Tutankhamun's tomb have revealed two hidden chambers that may contain the burial site of Queen Nefertiti, one of the wives of Tut's father, the Pharaoh Akhenaten.

Mamdouh el-Damaty said the scans have shown that the chambers may hold metal or organic material inside them, increasing the likelihood that they contain a burial site.

A Japanese team, led by Japanese radar expert Hirokatsu Watanabe, conducted the scans and further scans are planned for the end of the month, he said, according to the Associated Press.

"It means a rediscovery of Tutankhamun...for Egypt it is a very big discovery, it could be the discovery of the century," el-Damaty said, adding that he was "90 percent positive" that another chamber lay behind the north wall of the tomb

"It is very important for Egyptian history and for all of the world," he said.

He would not elaborate on what precisely could be inside the chambers but said that it could be a member of Tutankhamun's family. The Egyptian Pharaoh, who died when he was 19 years old, ruled during the 14th century BC, which makes his tomb more than 3,000 years old.

The findings add credence to a paper published by British archaeologist Nicholas Reeves last year that posited that another tomb may lay behind King Tut's, based on laser scans that suggested there were pathways and doorways that had been sealed shut.

Reeves and other Egyptologists have speculated that King Tut's iconic mask was originally intended for Nefertiti and that Tut may have been laid to rest in an exterior chamber in what is actually Nefertiti's tomb.

King Tut's tomb is the most famous of all the burial sites in Egypt's Valley of the Kings in the city of Luxor. It was first discovered by British archaeologist Howard Carter in 1922.