Researchers are continuing their quest for detail the remains of the once famous Pink and White Terraces buried at the bottom of Lake Rotomahana.
The picturesque terraces, once described as the eighth wonder of the natural world, were buried in the eruption of Mt Tarawera in 1886. This week researchers are heading out on to the lake created by the eruption to survey the lake floor with new equipment.
Their work follows on from two major discoveries last year: the identification of a section of the pink terraces from sonar and photography data – announced through the Science Media Centre in Feb 2011, and a further announcement that part of the white terraces was also found in June 2011 (see video at right).
Currently Project leader Cornel de Ronde, of GNS Science, and several other researchers working on the lake will be using acoustic mapping equipment to get a better picture of the terrace remains, which are buried under a thick layer of mud. The multibeam sonar scanner they are using will improve map resolution by at least ten times.
You can follow the progress of the researchers on the blog of Julian Thomson , Educational outreach facilitator at GNS Science.
The return to lake Rotomahana has been covered by several media outlets including:
3 News: Further hunt for Pink and White Terrace remains
MSN News: Scientists look for more terrace remains
New Zealand Herald: Team back on ’emotional’ search for lost terraces
Stuff.co.nz (and other Fairfax papers): Quest for data on Pink and White Terraces