China’s scientific ambitions are diverse. Not all of them are aiming for the stars, as evidenced by a recent drilling project they’ve undertaken to investigate the mysteries of Earth’s crust.
In the news: It’s been a busy week for China, which, in addition to sending its first civilian astronaut into space, has begun a drilling project aimed at creating the deepest well on its soil.
- The excavation site is located in the Tarim Basin in northwest China’s Xinjiang region.
the details: The project aims to reach a depth of 11,100 meters, according to the state news agency Xinhua.
- With such a depth, it will undoubtedly be the most impressive in the Middle Kingdom, but it will not win the title of the deepest hole in the world.
- That honor goes to Russia’s Kola Craters in Siberia (over 12,500 metres).
- The Chinese cavity will traverse more than 10 geological layers to reach Cretaceous rocks, which are between 65 and 145 million years old.
- To achieve this, Chinese scientists will use more than 2,000 tons of highly advanced equipment.
- “The construction of this drilling project can be compared to a heavy vehicle riding on two thin steel cables,” Sun Jinsheng, a scientist with the Chinese Academy of Engineering, said in a statement. Xinhua.
This project is in response to President Xi Jinping’s 2021 call for progress in deep-sea exploration.
- The purpose of this dig, of course, is to learn more about what lies deep under our feet in the continental crust.
- Chinese scientists hope to locate new mineral and energy resources.
- This drilling of one of the largest man-made boreholes will also enable progress in assessing environmental hazards such as earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.
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