Underground water world

Keywords: underground water world
Description: Roman engineers chipped an aqueduct through more than 100 kilometers of stone to connect water to cities in the ancient province of Syria. The monumental effort took more than a century, says the German researcher who discovered it.

When the Romans weren't busy conquering their enemies, they loved to waste massive quantities of water, which gurgled and bubbled throughout their cities. The engineers of the empire invented standardized lead pipes, aqueducts as high as fortresses, and water mains with 15 bars (217 pounds per square inch) of pressure.

In the capital alone there were thousands of fountains, drinking troughs and thermal baths. Rich senators refreshed themselves in private pools and decorated their gardens with cooling grottos. The result was a record daily consumption of over 500 liters of water per capita (Germans today use around 125 liters).

However, when the Roman legions marched into the barren region of Palestine, shortly before the birth of Christ, they had to forgo the usual splashing about, at least temporarily. It was simply too dry.

But that didn't stop the empire's clever engineers. They soon figured out a way to put things right. In the former Roman province of Syria (located in modern day Jordan), researchers are currently studying a sensational canal system. It extends mostly underground over a distance of 106 kilometers (66 miles).

The tunnel was discovered by Mathias Dцring, a hydromechanics professor in Darmstadt, Germany. Treading on moss-covered steps, he squeezes his way into dark caverns plastered with waterproof mortar. Greek letters are emblazoned on the walls, and bats dart through the air. "Sometimes we have to stop working -- there isn't enough oxygen," says the project director.

Photogallery Underground water world:


The Archaeology News Network: Wonders of Constantinople's ...

Underground Rivers | Xcaret Cancun Mexico

Underground Rivers | Xcaret Cancun Mexico

Ilirio's Hvar Tours  Krka waterfalls, national park tours

Yas WaterWorld - WTI - Water Technology Inc.

Gouffre Berger cave: British climbers drop nearly 4,000 feet into ...

AP PHOTOS: Fresh water _ the world's most precious resource ...

Worldmapper: The world as you've never seen it before


The New World Wonder: Puerto Princesa Underground River

Waterworld! on Pinterest | Waterfalls, Caves and Blue Hole

SUBCULTURE / Going underground / Urban explorer documents the ...

Scientists Think They've Found an Underground Ocean That's Six ...

Journey to the centre of the earth: British climbers drop nearly ...

Puerto Princesa Underground River - Palawan - Ocean Island Travel ...


The Cooks Hill underground drinking water reservoir. - ABC News ...