The Triassic Sphere
South of the Bismantova Stone in the municipality of Castelnovo ne Monti – Italy, astriking outcrop of Triassic gypsum runs in the higher Secchia Valley. These rocks are evaporite of more than 200 million years old, deposited in the waters of the ancient sea of Tethys which, evaporating within large lagoons, deposited gypsum and salt. The areas of Triassic gypsum are part of the “Appennino Tosco-Emiliano” National Park which due to its extraordinary features and ongoing relationship between man and nature, in 2015 was designated by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as a Man and Biosphere Reserve.
The figure shows this “prehistoric” landscape during one hour of Earth’s rotation about its axis. A thin Moon, just 17% illuminated from the Sun and the colours of the astronomical twilight enhance the majesty of these white geological formations.