The Richat Structure or Guelb er Richat in Mauritania” is regarded by geologists as a highly symmetrical and deeply eroded geologic dome. It was first described in the 1930s to 1940s, as Richât Crater or Richât buttonhole. Richard-Molard (1948) considered it to be the result of a laccolithic thrust. A geological expedition to Mauritania led by Théodore Monod in 1952 recorded four ‘crateriform or circular irregularities” in the area.”(q)
The feature was thought by many to be an impact crater until it was identified as the remains of a possible ‘salt dome’(a). Some of the more enthusiastic supporters of the ‘Electric Universe’ school of thought have sought to identify the feature as the consequence of an electrical discharge.(e)
This is outlined in an April 2022 paper by Andrew Hall, explaining what he calls the ‘Keystone Pattern’.(r)
Even creationists have claimed that the original surface of the ‘Structure’ had been eroded by Noah’s Flood(t).
The concentric circles of which the structure is composed is clearly revealed by satellite imagery. However, these characteristics are not visible when walking across the structure(u). The scientific consensus today is that the structure is a natural geological feature. In more technical terms a geological ‘dome’ is “A structure that plunges in all directions to form a circular or elongate structure is a dome. Domes are generally formed from one main deformation event, or via diapirism from underlying magmatic intrusions or movements of upwardly mobile, mechanically ductile material such as rock salt (salt dome) and shale (shale diapir). The Richat Structure of the Sahara is considered a dome that has been laid bare by erosion.”(k) Further geological data was available on a German website(v).
It did not take long before it was compared to Plato’s description of Atlantis. However, Ulf Richter has pointed out that it is too wide (35 km), too elevated (400 metres) and too far from the sea (500 km) to be seriously considered the location of Atlantis. Nevertheless, researchers such as Robert deMelo are still prepared to consider it a possible location candidate(b).
50 km west-southwest of Richat is a similar though smaller feature, the Semsiyat Dome, having a diameter of just 5 km(o).
In 2008, George Sarantitis put forward the idea that the Richat Structure was the location of Atlantis, supporting his contention with an intensive reappraisal of the translation of Plato’s text(g). His theory has been published in Greek, with an English translation now (2017) imminent.
In 2006 George S. Alexander and Natalis Rosen were struck by the similarity of the Richat feature with Plato’s description and decided to investigate on the ground. Instability in the region prevented this until late 2008 when they visited the site, gathering material for a movie. The film was then finalised and published on their then-newly-established website in 2010(c).
In 2008, Charles Giuliani self-published Alternative View of The Distant Past . In this wide-ranging book, the author tackles the story of Atlantis and endeavours to identify the Richat Structure as the location of Plato’s city of Atlantis. His speculations lack scientific evidence and contradict reason. The main weaknesses are his dating of Atlantis (9600 BC) and the logistical problems of launching an attack on Athens 4,000km away from Richat at a time when archaeology indicates that seafaring was carried out with little more than dugout canoes or rafts.
In 2013 further support for linking Atlantis with Richat came from Jose D.C. Hernandez with a rather convoluted theory in a paper entitled A Celestial Impact and Atlantis(f).
Even more bizarre is the claim by Anthony Woods that although Ireland was the island of Atlantis, the city of Atlantis (Cerne) was in Mauritania and is known today as the Richat Structure!
Towards the end of the 2018 media ‘silly season’, the YouTube channel Bright Insight made a pathetic attempt to breathe new life into the Atlantis in Sahara theory. However, it fails on one simple fact; it is not submerged, but for good measure, when Alexander and Rosen investigated the Richat Structure they could not produce a single piece of physical evidence from the 35 km wide site. Where was the bustling port described by Plato? I could go on, but remember, it’s not called the silly season without reason.
Early November 2018 saw the British tabloid press give further coverage to Jimmy Corsetti’s ideas(i)(j) (The Sun gave his name as Jimmy Bright!). His theories are totally dependent on the destruction of Atlantis having occurred around twelve thousand years ago. He does not explain how an attack was launched from Mauritania on Athens which did not even exist at that time. Corsetti, like many others, needs this very early date to explain why the Richat Structure is not underwater today but was gradually uplifted as a result of tectonic forces in the region. However, Plato clearly states that the submerged Atlantis was still a hazard to shipping in his day, a period when the Structure would have been at its present elevation. As no geologic event has occurred during the two and a half millennia since Plato, which could have raised the Structure from the seabed to an elevation of 400 metres 500 km from the Atlantic, we are obliged to give greater credence to the scientific conclusion that the Richat Structure is a natural feature. Corsetti does have at least one fan(n).
It was in 2018 that Corsetti published a video promoting the Richat Structure as Atlantis, which received extensive coverage. Steven Novella, a well-known Atlantis sceptic, published an article debunking Corsetti’s ‘evidence’ in some considerable detail(s). However, while I would endorse Novella’s arguments(l) regarding the Richat Structure, I strongly disagree with Novella’s closed-minded attitude towards the existence of Atlantis as well as Corsetti’s attention-seeking location choice for Plato’s island. I would add that Corsetti has his date wrong and that to launch an attack on Athens nearly 4000 km away by land (3000 km by sea) from the ‘Structure’ is logistical nonsense.
In a recent conversation with Joe Rogan, Corsetti claimed that since the Structure contains salt, it MUST have been submerged and no other explanation is possible. However, as I have pointed out above the Richat feature is an eroded ‘salt dome’ and quite naturally has salt in it without the need for submersion.
>The natural geological origins of the Richat Structure are discussed in some detail in a 2005 paper by three Canadian scientists in the journal Geology, produced by the Geological Society of America. It would be interesting to hear the response of Corsetti to facts compared with his daft speculations(w).<
However, in 2018, Martin K. Ettington published a booklet entitled The Real Atlantis  in which he also insisted that the Richat Structure is the remains of Atlantis but with no real evidence to support his contention.
In Joining the Dots  and in Atlantipedia.ie I have consistently argued that in ancient times, proximity is an essential logistical requirement in order to achieve a successful invasion. This was particularly true in ancient times when all empires expanded through the invasion of neighbouring territories. The Richat Structure is many thousands of kilometres from Athens, so to suggest that an attack was launched from Mauretania on Greece is simply ludicrous.
There is a relatively recent website(m) dedicated to promoting the ‘Structure’ as the location of Atlantis. It is well presented by its author Gergely (Gregory) Dzsida with plenty of content. Unfortunately, I cannot accept its basic claim, To my mind, it fails to answer Richter’s arguments regarding, size, elevation and location as well as my point regarding proximity.
Although the Richat Structure as the location of Atlantis conflicts with details in Plato’s account as well as reason, it still gathers supporters based simply on its circular shape. A recent example of this came from a Danish commentator, Palle A. Anderson(p).
An even more ridiculous suggestion was offered in 2021 by Carlos Bisceglia in Atlantis 2021- Lost Continent Rediscovered in which he proposed that Atlantis was known to the Egyptians as the ‘Land of Ma’ and that its capital was the Richat Structure together with the Semsiat Dome, mentioned above, which is 50km away. In order to explain how his Atlantis is not submerged, Bisceglia has proposed that the Land of Ma became confused with the submerged Land of Mu (Sundaland) in the Pacific and that “it is possible that Solon or Plato confused ‘the Land of Ma’ with the ‘Land of Mu’, and thus two completely independent accounts were merged into one.” He adds “how the Egyptian priests knew this is a mystery. Evidently, some survivors from Sundaland arrived in some way in Egypt”
In April 2022, David Edward published Atlantis Solved: The Final Definitive Proof , which also endorsed the Richat Structure as the location of Atlantis. The author of this slender 99-page book admits to being greatly influenced by the earlier claims of Jimmy Corsetti.
(o) http://www.b14643.de/Mauritania-Craters/index.htm (see the end of page)