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Large crater appears at the 'end of the world'

By 0 and 0 and 0
15 July 2014


The crater is large enough for several Mi-8 helicopters to fly into it. Picture: Konstantin Nikolaev

The striking puncture in the earth is believed to be up to 80 metres wide but its depth is not estimated yet. A scientific team has been sent to investigate the hole and is due to arrive at the scene on Wednesday.

The cause of its sudden appearance in Yamal - its name means the 'end of the world' in the far north of Siberia - is not yet known, though one scientific claim is that global warming may be to blame.

There is additionally speculation it could be caused by a space object - perhaps a meteorite - striking earth or that it is a sinkhole caused by collapsing rock beneath the hole caused by as yet unknown factors.

The giant hole appeared close to a forest some 30 kilometres from Yamal's biggest gas field Bovanenkovo. Experts are confident that a scientific explanation will be found for it and that it is not - as one web claim suggested - evidence 'of the arrival of a UFO craft' to the planet. 

A report and footage highlighted by Zvezda TV says the dark colour of the crater indicates 'some temperature processes', without explaining more what they may mean. Others say that the darkening around the inner rim indicates its formation was accompanied by severe burning scorching the edges.  

Some observers believe water or dry soil is seen falling into the cavity.

Large crater appears at the 'end of the world'

Large crater appears at the 'end of the world'

Large crater appears at the 'end of the world'

Large crater appears at the 'end of the world'

Large crater appears at the 'end of the world'

Initial reports and images were suspected to be fakes, but the hole is a real phenomenon and it is believed to have been formed around two years ago. Pictures: Konstantin Nikolaev

There is agreement that soil around the hole was thrown out of the crater, large enough for several Mi-8 helicopters to fly into it - not that they have. 

The expedition organised by the Yamal authorities includes two experts from the Centre for the Study of the Arctic and one from Cryosphere Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences. They plan to take samples of soil, air and water from the scene.

They will be accompanied by a specialist from the Emergencies Ministry.

A spokesman for the ministry's Yamal branch ruled out a meteorite but said it was too early to say what cause the gigantic hole in the earth. 

'We can definitely say that it is not a meteorite. No details yet,' said a spokesman. 

Initial reports and images were suspected to be fakes, but the hole is a real phenomenon and it is believed to have been formed around two years ago.

Engineer Konstantin Nikolaev from Yugra is one of those to have filmed it from a helicopter.  

Anna Kurchatova from Sub-Arctic Scientific Research Centre thinks the crater was formed by a water, salt and gas mixture igniting an underground explosion, the result of global warming. She postulates that gas accumulated in ice mixed with sand beneath the surface, and that this was mixed with salt - some 10,000 years ago this area was a sea.

Global warming, causing an 'alarming' melt in the permafrost, released gas causing an effect like the popping of a Champagne bottle cork, she suggests.

Given the gas pipelines in this region such a happening is potentially dangerous.

Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug

in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug

in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug

in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug

Sights of Yamal - aerial view of tundra, road to Bovanenkovo gas field, opening ceremony of the Bovanenkovo, and reindeers. Pictures: Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug administration

The Yamal Peninsula in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug is a strategic oil and gas bearing region of Russia.  

It is Russia's main production area for gas and the Bovanenkovo field is of central importance to gas supplies from Siberia to the world. 

The gas field was discovered in 1972 and developed by Gazprom starting production in 2012. The Yamal peninsula is bordered by the Kara Sea - Baydaratskaya Bay - to the west, and the Gulf of Ob on the east. It extends some 700 kilometres over mainly permafrost. 

The area is famous for its reindeer herds and migratory birds. 

The Nenets and Khanty reindeer herders hold about half a million domestic reindeer.

The remains of ancient woolly mammoths have been found in this enchanting territory. 

Comments (172)

Could this be a Fulgurite on a large scale?
mth, Parkersburg, WV U.S.
20/07/2014 06:14
Could it be related to the big booms and other sounds people have been hearing around the globe these last two years? Is it possible that after all the mining, oil drilling, underground bomb testing and the melting of permafrost that something is radically shifting in the earth's crust? This clearly does not resemble a sinkhole, like those being found across the U.S., more like an explosion out. Gas? Perhaps. Would it make such a round, smooth hole? If a team does determine to go down into the hole (brave souls!), they should prepare for the worst. Something is definitely moving down there.
Tosca Zraikat, Qld, Australia
20/07/2014 06:00
Interestingly, both the still photos, and the video, contain NOT A SINGLE reference that would allow an astute reader to make an estimate as to the size of the crater/hole. Not a tree, bush, or in the case of the video, not even a frame containing the shadow of the helicopter. If I am wrong, I will stand corrected.
Robin Wier, Phoenix. Arizona, USA, 85053
20/07/2014 03:01
The lemmings have finally made it out of the video game! I truly believe the end of our earth as we know it is coming. Within my lifetime. This is what happens when governments control weather. Anyone notice right now it's getting darker later than it has in previous summers? We are experiencing larger earthquake and hurricanes than ever before and more frequently. Earth is changing. This is just another indication. Enjoy life while you can.
Verbal Ham Radio, San Diego, CA
19/07/2014 21:30
Don't Go Down There!... The Devil is waiting. It Should Be Called 'Hells Tunnel'. Who knows they claim the world is to end soon. ooh ooh.. maybe 'Satan's Sinkhole'.. I'm gonna go for number 2.
Ash, Adelaide
19/07/2014 21:22
Just watch and see...... the Allien's trying their experientments beneat the earth crush to blow up the planet earth.
Shoveyi Keyho, Nagaland/India
19/07/2014 19:03
The giant crater look like it was dug out from the inside out like a gopher coming out his hole this is scsary its hells gateway why doesn't the hole world know about this what are you going to do?
Lhacey sannicoDanni Colaslas, el cajon california
19/07/2014 13:50
Interesting that its in Russia and right near their gas and oil fields. I wouldn't be surprised if SOMEONE whos not hsppy with Russia was trying to siphon off their oil. Hm.
Anon. , UK
19/07/2014 12:31
"Ancient Astronaut Theorists suggest, the earth has a new sphincter."
Derp Diggler, Spuzzum, BC, Canada
19/07/2014 11:28
Ancient Astronaut Theorists suggest: "The Earth has a new sphincter."
Derp Diggler, Spuzzum, BC, Canada, Earth
19/07/2014 11:24
fenomeno ufo ?
rain , brasil
19/07/2014 08:29
whatever was there, decided to leave....don't know if I blame them.
tina schilling, tuscaloosa, usa
19/07/2014 08:17
is this paper designed to fool? A quick look at any other references about this field shows that it basically is on a fault line where volcanic activity is to be expected. Which of these photos are of this area? Green one day and white another? Temperate seasons at the artic circle? Petri dish or aerial photo? Mars map with water near?
Climate change is a reality we are all experiencing now. No need to be foolish against such danger to us.
carl lampland, st. paul mn usa
19/07/2014 07:22
It's Godzilla!!!!
Axel, United States
19/07/2014 06:17
If all else fails blame it on global warming!!!!!
thomas gillum, ohio
19/07/2014 04:10

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