By Casey Frye, CCNN Writer
Siberia is a massive region that takes up almost all of North Asia, and has been part of Russia since the 17th century. Recently, a massive crater measuring about 262 feet in width was found in Siberia, and experts from Russia’s Center for the Study of the Arctic and the Cryosphere Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences will be investigating its cause.
The crater is located in the Yamal Peninsula near a forest that’s 30 kilometers from a huge gas field, so it may have been caused by something as simple as a gas explosion. Since Yamal means “end of the world” in the language of the local natives, the Nenets, this bizarre crater seems even spookier…
However, before everyone starts thinking that an alien spacecraft landed, it’s probably just gas. Why? Because the natural gas reservoir in this region is the largest in all of Russia!
So, how do these underground explosions happen? Well, when the ice under the soil melts, it can release gas, which leads to a big ol’ KABOOM. Other possible explanations include a meteorite blasting the ground from space or the crater merely being the result of a sinkhole – which happens when rock is eroded (worn away) over time and collapses inwards.
Featured image courtesy of Bulka on YouTube.