Egypt was set to put King Tut's mummy on public display for the first time Sunday - 85 years after the 3,000-year-old boy pharaoh's golden enshrined tomb and mummy were discovered in Luxor's famed Valley of the Kings.
Egypt's antiquities chief Zahi Hawass said scientists began restoring King Tut's badly damaged mummy more than two years ago after it was removed briefly from its sarcophagus and placed into a CT scanner for the first time for further examination.
Much of the mummy's body is broken into 18 pieces that Hawass described looked like stones that were damaged when British archaeologist Howard Carter discovered the mummy, took it from its tomb and tried to pull off its famous golden mask.
But Hawass said he fears a more recent phenomenon - mass tourism - is further deteriorating Tut's mummy. Thousands of tourists visit the underground chamber every month.
"The humidity and heat caused by... people entering the tomb and their breathing will change the mummy to a powder. The only good thing (left) in this mummy is the face. We need to preserve the face," said Hawass.