Last November, the Scan Pyramids project unveiled evidence that there is a 30-meter (100-foot) chamber running above the Grand Gallery in the Great Pyramid at Giza. The image of the chamber, produced by muon tomography (basically an x-ray of the pyramid, made using cosmic rays), is unfortunately imprecise, leading to a wide variety of ideas and speculation as to the chamber’s function and what may lie within. One such idea has been put forward by a Italian astrophysicist/archaeoastronomer Giulio Magli, in that it may contain an iron throne for the pharaoh to sit upon, as part of his journey into the afterlife.

Giulio Magli, Director of the Department of Mathematics and Professor of Archaeoastronomy at Italy’s Politecnico di Milano, speculates that the chamber holds a throne of iron, based on the funerary rites described in the Pyramid Texts.

"There is a possible interpretation, which is in good agreement with what we know about the Egyptian funerary religion as witnessed in the Pyramids Texts," according to Magli. "In these texts it is said that the pharaoh, before reaching the stars of the north, will have to pass the ‘gates of the sky’ and sit on his ‘throne of iron’."

The Great Pyramid contains four diagonal shafts leading outward from the King’s and Queen’s chambers, theorized to allow the pharaoh’s Ka, or spirit, to leave the pyramid for his journey into the stars of the northern sky. While it is currently not known as to whether or not the northern shaft intersects with the mysterious "Big Void" above the Grand Gallery, Magli hypothesizes that there may be a physical iron throne there, waiting for the disincarnate pharaoh, presumed to be Cheops/Khufu in this case.

Due to the significance of meteoric iron in ancient Egyptian culture, Magli speculates that such a throne would be covered in sheets of the extraterrestrial metal, in the same manner that the throne of Cheop’s mother, Queen Hetepheres, was constructed, built from cedar wood and covered with sheets of gold and faience. Magli is calling for a new investigation into the north shaft, an endeavor that might yield new clues into the nature of Scan Pyramid’s enigmatic Big Void.