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Mysterious Craters Mystify

By Nicholas Nalence

Crater

Mysterious Craters Mystify
By: Nicholas C NalenceIn July 2014, mysterious large craters were spotted in a frozen wasteland in Siberia. The discovery of these craters, which were not caused by asteroids or meteors, has left scientists baffled. The first crater that appeared was a whopping sixty-six feet in diameter.

The leading idea as to why these craters are appearing is said to be due to methane gas explosions. Methane Gas is present in high levels under both earth’s surface and under the oceans. Global warming had thawed the permafrost on the Yamal Peninsula, which had caused methane trapped inside the icy ground to explode.

“What I think is happening here is, the permafrost has been acting as a cap or seal on the ground, through which gas can’t permeate,” says Paul Overduin, a senior scientist at the Alfred Wegener Institute in Germany who studies permafrost of the craters. “And it reaches a particular temperature where there’s not enough ice in it to act that way anymore. And then gas can rush out.”

It would take many millions of these explosions to occur in a short time frame for it to become a major concern. There are a total of seven craters like the one pictured, two of which have turned into lakes. There could be more of these craters in existence, but it is unknown where they are and how many more of them will form.

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