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Modern Mysteries

Dozens of new craters appear in Siberia

By T.K. Randall
February 24, 2015 · Comment icon 16 comments

It isn't clear exactly how many more craters there might be. Image Credit: YouTube / Bulka
Scientists have called for an urgent investigation after the appearance of several more craters.
Siberia found itself at the center of one of last year's biggest mysteries when a number of large holes started to appear in remote areas of the country back in July.

Researchers spent months investigating the phenomenon and determined that the release of gas hydrates brought about by rising temperatures was the most likely explanation. Now however it turns out that the craters may be a lot more widespread in the region than had been previously believed.

"We know now of seven craters in the Arctic area," said Professor Vasily Bogoyavlensky. "Five are directly on the Yamal peninsula, one in Yamal Autonomous district, and one is on the north of the Krasnoyarsk region, near the Taimyr peninsula."

Scientists have speculated that there could be several dozen more craters spread across Siberia.
"I would compare this with mushrooms: when you find one mushroom, be sure there are few more around," said Professor Bogoyavlensky. "I suppose there could be 20 to 30 craters more."

Some of the craters have now turned in to lakes while one of particular note appears to be surrounded by a series of two dozen smaller holes.

"These objects need to be studied, but it is rather dangerous for the researchers," he said.

"We know that there can occur a series of gas emissions over an extended period of time, but we do not know exactly when they might happen."

Source: Siberian Times | Comments (16)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #7 Posted by Junior Chubb 9 years ago
Waiting for someone to link this to previous mass extinction events...
Comment icon #8 Posted by DemonicCupcake 9 years ago
All jokes aside, this phenomenon is intriguing to say the least. When you put into perspective how little of our scientific history we have recorded, we know nearly nothing about how normal these holes may be. This seemingly strange and eerie occurrence could be completely normal and mundane in the grand scheme of things. Who's to say these holes don't open up normally every couple hundred years or so to release gases? It's silly how people will read these articles and instantly conclude the world is ending, or caving in on itself, or the rapture is upon us. I suppose ignorance truly does fuel... [More]
Comment icon #9 Posted by Doug1029 9 years ago
Here we have a new phenomenon to study. Why is this thus? Doug
Comment icon #10 Posted by XenoFish 9 years ago
Probably some gigantic worm from Chernobyl.
Comment icon #11 Posted by Sundew 9 years ago
Probably some gigantic worm from Chernobyl. Shai Hulud. The spice must flow!
Comment icon #12 Posted by aquatus1 9 years ago
Properly designated, these are "Sinkholes". Not Craters. true? These aren't exactly sinkholes. It's a different sort of geological phenomena. As for the quantity, it bears keeping in mind that this region isn't a well-populated one, and the first few were found by accident. For all we know, these things are fairly common, and we just never knew about them. But that's why they need to be investigated.
Comment icon #13 Posted by Professor Buzzkill 9 years ago
I agree that they aren't sink holes, which are generally cause by water flowing/eroding underground. Where as these Russian holes are filling with water like little lakes.
Comment icon #14 Posted by woodsbooger 9 years ago
I thought the current census among scientists was that massive permafrost melts are eroding the carbonates found underground there and causing the sinkholes.
Comment icon #15 Posted by Varelse 9 years ago
Gas is always in the ground and water. Mostly nitrogen and Co2 by molecular weight. The colder and deeper, the more concentrated. Warm it up even .3 degree and billions of tons of gas will rise, expand, and heat up in the process. Simple physics. But what happens next?
Comment icon #16 Posted by Ashotep 9 years ago
Wonder what affect all that methane will have on global warming. Wasn't there a large methane release during the permian extinction? I was reading a article where they said people reported seeing a flash of light like in a explosion. These are not sink holes.

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