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  • Turkish archaeo-geophysicist professor examines possible Noah’s Ark site!

    Trip to the boat formation site by Dr. Fethi Yüksel and the leadership team.

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    The Noah's ark project leadership team on the Durupinar Noah's ark site.
  • Noah’s Ark Scientific Project

    Turkish scientists will be doing multiple GPR scans, ERT scans and core drilling survey.

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1961 Aerial Photo of Noah's ark (Durupinar site) from Hepimiz Ayni Gemideydik by Cem Sertesen - © Ara Güler2019 Drone photo Noah's ark (Durupinar site) - © Andrew Jones
1961 Aerial Photo of Noah's ark (Durupinar site) from Hepimiz Ayni Gemideydik by Cem Sertesen - © Ara Güler2019 Drone photo Noah's ark (Durupinar site) - © Andrew Jones

The Durupinar boat-shaped formation (Noah’s ark) was discovered on Sept. 11, 1959, by Turkish Army Captain Ilhan Durupinar. This boat-shaped formation is believed to be the buried remains of Noah’s ark (Nuh’un Gemisi) that landed in the Mountains of Ararat according to the Bible (Genesis 8:4) and according to the Qur’an (11:44) on Al-Judi which locals in the nearby village will tell you is a name given to this area as well. The main research and interest in this site started in the 1970s through the mid-1990s due to the work of American explorer and researcher, Ron Wyatt, and others including Turkish scientists. In 2014 and 2019 further independent private geophysical surveys were done again on the ark formation showing layers and interesting angular structures below the ground. The new GPR data shows parallel lines and angular structures 8 to 20 feet down. These parallel lines and right angles below the surface are something you would not expect to see in a natural, geologic formation. Interestingly, the boat formation has also been confirmed to be the exact length of the ark given in the Bible (Genesis 6:15).

In 2021 a consortium of Turkish scientists, interested Americans, and other private supporters abroad are planning to do the most complete geophysical survey and scientific study of this site to date using as many modern scientific methods as possible. The scientific study will also focus on how best to preserve the site for future generations. Friends, we have a huge scientific project in front of us! All the pieces are in place. We have the support of key locals, we have interested scientists who have the permit to work in this area, and we have the media contacts to document the work. Scroll down to financially support this important effort that will help the tourism of Turkey as well.

The 2021 Turkish American Noah’s Ark Scientific Project

Geophysical, Geological, Geomorphological, Geotechnical, Geomatic, and Geographical Research

Within the borders of Ağrı province is the boat formation (the Durupinar Noah’s ark site) that has been investigated by various researchers due to the possibility that it is the buried remains of Noah’s ark. The boat formation is located between Telçeker (Sürbehan) and Üzengili (Meşar) villages in the southern part of Gürbulak Valley near the Iranian border.

This formation, located on the foothills of the Akyayla Mountain and 32 kilometers (20 miles) south of the summit of Mount Ararat (Ağrı Dağı), is above the meso-tertiary rock units. It is thought that this section has not been affected by tectonic deformations for a long time. Therefore, analysis and dating studies should be carried out as soon as possible so that uncertainty can be eliminated. The fact that it has the potential to create a great tourist site for Turkey makes the issue urgent.

It has been observed that the area where this structure allegedly belonging to Noah’s Ark is located is not very well protected. Animal grazing and especially outside visitors and researchers enter the boat formation area without permission. First of all, this area must be protected from uncontrolled entrances.If this is the remains of Noah’s Ark, not a single stone should be moved from here because even the smallest detail can be very important for the research to be done correctly. It is also a fact that the deep crevices that occur are dangerous as they can cause accidents and serious injury.

As a result of field observations made on site, we observed that serious crevices occur on the right and left edges of this structure. Natural erosion and those caused by repeated landslides now extend to the body of the structure. As a result of heavy rains, the waters flowing from the valleys formed by the water coming down the slopes from the mountainous area on the right and left side of the structure should be drained from the site and diverted before reaching the structure. Within the scope of the project to be carried out, landslide susceptibility maps should be made here first. This risk will be minimized by showing landslide susceptibility maps of the site using geographical information systems.

The Ministry of Culture and Tourism’s Immovable Cultural and Natural Assets High Council has taken the site under protection as a natural protected area, taking into account that the ship mass is an immovable cultural and natural property that needs to be protected with the decision dated 17.09.1989 and numbered 3657.

Observations and examinations were carried out in the area where the possible remains of Noah’s Ark are located. As a result of the initial study, the following research goals and recommendations are given. First, we will do a ground-penetrating radar (GPR) survey of the Noah’s ark site which is a geophysical method that uses radar pulses to image the subsurface of a location. Next, the team will also use Electrical Resistivity Tomography (ERT) which is a geophysical technique for imaging subsurface structures from electrical resistivity measurements made at the surface, or by electrodes in one or more boreholes. Finally, for the geophysical survey phase, a magnetic survey will be done to detect and map archaeological artifacts and features. The final phase will involve core drilling and geological testing of the rocks at the site.

  • Days 1-5

    Ground-penetrating Radar (GPR) Geophysical Survey of the Ark Formation

  • Days 1-16

    Ortho-photo Preparation & Core Drilling

    Days 1-16

  • Days 17-21

    Airborne/Ground LiDAR and Magnetometry Geophysical Survey

  • Days 5-19

    Electrical Resistivity Tomography (ERT) (aka Resistivity Survey) Geophysical Survey

    Days 5-19

  • Day 16-30

    Geological and Geomorphological Map Preparation

  • Days 31-60

    Mineralogical, Petrographic and Chemical Analysis of the Cores

    Days 31-60

  • Days 61-105

    Reporting of Core Drilling Analysis Results

  • Days 1-150

    Geomorphology Mapping & Reporting

    Days 1-150

The Turkish American Leadership Team

Assist. Prof. Dr. Fethi Ahmet Yüksel

Assist. Prof. Dr. Fethi Ahmet Yüksel

Lead Scientist

Department of Geophysical Engineering,
Applied Geophysics Department
Istanbul University - Cerrahpaşa

Sait Yardimci

Sait Yardimci

Turkish Film Commission
Noah’s Ark Culture Council
Film Producer

Zafer Onay

Zafer Onay

Businessman & Tour Guide
ARK Café
East Turkey Expedition
Ararat Treks

Andrew Jones

Andrew Jones

Noah’s Ark Researcher
Discovered Media
East Turkey Expedition
ARK Café

Ryan Mauro

Ryan Mauro

President of Doubting Thomas Research Foundation (a 501(c)(3) non-profit)
Adjunct Instructor, Liberty University

The documentary film and media outreach are being coordinated by Sait Yardımcı, producer and the Chairman of the Turkish Film Commission, and Andrew Jones of Discovered Media.

Zafer Onay is a local resident of Doğubayazıt, Ağrı Province and has been involved in the tourism industry in the region for many years. He has been a tour guide, translator, driver, and government liaison to the Noah’s ark project besides owning his own businesses. His deep knowledge of the local history, customs and his many connections has been an invaluable asset to the Noah’s ark research. Click to read: Zafer Onay is a well known English speaking guide for the Ararat area and has been featured in Lonely Planet guide books and on their website for many years.

Andrew Jones has been involved in the Noah’s Ark research since he was a teenager in the early 1990s. He made his first trip to the Durupinar Noah’s ark site in 1997 while in college and fell in love with the region and people since that time. Originally from California, he now resides in Doğubayazıt, Ağrı Province. Click to read: Fox News: NOAH’S ARK DISCOVERY? A biblical story is getting new life thanks to new evidence

Six member Turkish scientific team:

Two archaeological geophysicists (including a geophysical engineer), a geomorphologist, a geo-archaeologist, an archaeo-geomorphologist, and a geographer. 

Ten member international scientific advisory board:

Four archaeologists, a heritage preservation specialist, a historian, a computer-aided design specialist, a geologist, a data visualization analyst, and a political scientist.

International media team:

A Turkish / American film crew to exclusively document the expedition for a future documentary film and a media team for press releases, social media campaigns, and interviews.

Three ways to help:

(1) Donate to the project or (2) Volunteer in person or (3) Come on a tour.