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In a scene in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, the Americans were on an offshore platform, using the underwater vibranium detector to search for vibranium. It is my understanding that:

  1. They only had the one vibranium detector, built by Riri Williams, and had no way of building more,

  2. The detector looked like it had a fairly short range, having to be underwater very close to the vibranium to set it off, and

  3. Prior to using the detector, the Americans had no information about where vibranium could be found, other than Wakanda.

Given the above facts, how did the Americans know where to set up their platform? Did they send their one vibranium detector all the way around all of Earth's oceans until they found the one spot that had vibranium? Or is there something I'm missing here — are any of (1–3) above false?

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  • What we know is likely different to what the American government knows.
    – Möoz
    Commented Jan 8, 2023 at 21:59
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    It's purely speculation that it has a very short range. Maybe it works at a long range with very poor accuracy. That would be enough to figure out which part of the ocean to go to. Commented Jan 9, 2023 at 16:49

1 Answer 1

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The detector looked like it had a fairly short range, having to be underwater very close to the vibranium to set it off,

Nothing in the film suggests that the vibranium detector had a fairly short range. When Dr. Graham and her team arrived at the ship, the vibranium detector had already located the vibranium, and they had already drilled to the vibranium. Dr. Graham and her team were only there to confirm the discovery.

Shuri had the following to say about the vibranium detector:

Shuri: This thing can detect the altered frequency of vibranium through water, stones, even heavy metals.

Shuri did not say that the vibranium detector has a short range, and based on how the American military and the CIA located the vibranium in the Atlantic Ocean and Shuri's description of the vibranium detector, it appears to be long-range.

Did they send their one vibranium detector all the way around all of Earth's oceans until they found the one spot that had vibranium?

The Americans most likely outfitted a ship with the vibranium detector and used its long-range capabilities to locate the vibranium in the Atlantic Ocean.

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