A small robot sent to solve one of history's mysteries only succeeded in presenting scientists and TV viewers with yet another mystery yesterday.
With its camera peering through a hole in a small sealed door in Egypt's Great Pyramid to see what was beyond, it discovered yet another door.
It's another sealed door. This is very important, said an excited Zahi Hawass, director of Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities.
The robot, the Pyramid Rover, took two hours to crawl along a narrow shaft, drill through a door, then push through its camera.
Dr Hawass said the next job for researchers was to study the video tape and plan for further inspections, which could take up to 12 months.
His council, engineers from the Boston firm iRobot and researchers from National Geographic, had spent a year planning yesterday's event.
American TV stations went live showing the robot creeping along the 20-centimetre-square 60-metre-long shaft.
As the robot inched along the rough-surfaced shaft toward the limestone door adorned with two copper handles, its path was lit by a blue beam.
During the broadcast, Dr Hawass revealed a stone sarcophagus found in a tomb near the Great Pyramid containing the skeleton of a man thought to have died at the time of the pyramid's construction some 4500 years ago.