Giant Crater Opens Up in Siberia, Spewing Chunks of Ice and Rocks

Scientists have named this newly discovered crater '17', and they revealed that it is at least 50 meters deep.

crater in siberia
Vesti Yamal TV

It was in 2014 that scientists initially spotted a giant crater in Siberia which was formed due to methane gas swelling beneath Siberia's melting permafrost. And now, another crater formed due to this phenomenon has been discovered in Northern Siberia. The crater was spotted by chance from the air by a Vesti Yamal TV crew.

50 Meter Deep Mysterious Crater

Later, a team of scientists at the Russian Academy of Sciences examined the crater, and they found that it is at least 50 meters deep. Scientists who investigated the site also found chunks of ice and rocks thrown hundreds of meters away from the epicenter.

"This object is unique. It carries a lot of additional scientific information, which I am not yet ready to disclose. This is the subject of scientific publications. We have to analyze all this, build three-dimensional models," said Vasily Bogoyavlensky, Doctor of Engineering Sciences, Newsweek reports.

Even though such craters were found in the Yamal Peninsula over the past six years, this crater is by far the largest discovered in this area.

Crater Created by Colossal Forces of Nature

Dr Evgeny Chuvilin, a leading researcher at Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology, revealed that these craters are created by the colossal forces of nature. According to researchers, when sufficient methane gas builds up under the surface of Earth, it results in an explosion, leaving behind a huge crater.

Researchers have named this new crater '17', as it is the 17th crater discovered in the region over the past few years.

"Gas-saturated cavities are formed in the permafrost. That is, in the literal sense, a void space filled with gas with high pressure," added Bogoyavlensky.

As crater formation in the region has become a normal phenomenon, experts have worried regarding its impacts on towns and cities built on permafrost, as Yamal has the biggest concentration of natural gas fields on Earth.