A research center opens in Yunyang district of Shiyan, Hubei province, on Nov 27, 2020, to promote the study of human development. Extremely old human skull fossils were found in 1989 and 1990 in Yunyang, creating a sensation among paleoanthropologists worldwide. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

A research center was opened in Yunyang district of Shiyan, Hubei province, on Friday to promote the study of human development.

In sensational finds in 1989 and 1990, two complete skull fossils of ancient humans were unearthed in Yunyang, formerly known as Yunxian county. The fossils were said to be about 1 million years old, which riveted the attention of paleoanthropologists worldwide. They were named among the top 10 archaeological discoveries in China in 1990. The skulls have been displayed at four museums, including the National Museum of China and the Hubei Provincial Museum.

Experts said a systematic archaeological investigation should be carried out in areas surrounding the ruins where the fossils were found. Further research could add to the understanding about ancient humans, including their culture, how they lived and migrated and what technologies and skills they possessed.

Zhou Jiaxin contributed to the story.