Exploding craters and massive holes are appearing out of the ground in Siberia

Anita Durairaj

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A massive crater in Siberia's Arctic tundraPhoto byTwitter / @CoCthulhu

Around 2014, scientists started to hear about huge holes appearing out of the ground in Siberia.

The massive craters were found across two regions of the Siberian tundra, namely the Yamal and Gyda peninsulas.

The craters were interesting to scientists because they did not just show up gradually. Instead, the craters suddenly exploded into existence. The land bubbled up and broke leaving behind a depression.

When the crater exploded into existence, chunks of rocks and ice would be thrown hundreds of meters from the epicenter. The blast occurred with high force and high pressure.

The cylindrical holes were approximately 65 feet wide and some craters could be as deep as over 165 feet. The bottom of the crater would be filled with a pool of water.

By 2020, there were 17 total number of craters that had formed in the Yamal and Gyda peninsulas.

Scientists were flummoxed and did not understand why the craters were forming. They were also concerned that this could be a sign or a turning point that the Siberian tundra was undergoing some radical changes.

Scientists now believe that these are "gas emission craters" that are formed from powerful explosions of methane gas from deep within the frozen ground.

First, there is buildup of methane gas in the permafrost. The pressure increases from the gas accumulation and as the pressure passes a critical point, it explodes.

According to scientists, climate change and warmer climates are causing the methane to escape in the form of exploding craters. Also, the Siberian peninsulae have the right conditions for this to occur as its permafrost is highly saturated with methane.

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Trained with a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Cincinnati, I write unique and interesting articles focused on science, history, and current events.

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