Why Was the Deepest Man-Made Hole Sealed?

Ashley | 04 - 20 - 2021
Deepest-Man-Made Hole

When Lotte Geeveen lowered a thermally protected mic down the deepest man-made hole, they heard incomprehensible rumbles that felt like Earth’s breathing noise. Here is what you should know:

  • The crust is the thin uppermost layer around 5-10km thick near the ocean and 30-45km thick near the mountain ranges and is made of mineral-rich rocks, sand, or ocean water.
  • The mantel is approximately 2900km thick that is semi-hot, and consists of semi-solid rocks that are mainly granite. 
  • The outer core is 2200km dense and consists of liquid iron and nickel.
  • The inner core is completely made of hot iron lava. 

Geologists discovered the contents of Earth’s core by seismograms from earthquakes and volcanoes in 1936. Later in the 70s’ many nations took it as a challenge to find out what hides beneath Earth’s crust. Thus, many holes were dug, and the deepest man-made hole of them all is the Kola Superdeep Borehole in Soviet Russia. 

Who, Why, When, and How?

  • Soviet geologists began digging the hole in the Kola Peninsula that is east of Scandinavia
  • The hole was dug to find out what laid below the crust and to discover new fossils
  • The digging began on 24th May 1970 and ended on 2008
  • Uralmash 4E and Uralmash 15000 were the types of machinery used to dig a vertical hole that was 9 inch in diameter and 40230ft in length

What Was Found In the Deepest Hole on Earth?

  • Water– Geologists didn’t expect to find water at that temperature. The only valid explanation was that water could not evaporate despite the heat as the rocks were impermeable in nature. 
  • Marine Fossils– Geologists expected to find fossils but not marine fossils. This opened a new angle to earth being entirely made of water before landmasses emerged.
  • Old Species- Species that were 24 million years or older were discovered, and geologists can’t comprehend how these species managed to live for so long in such hot temperatures.

Why Was the Deepest Hole on Earth Sealed?

  • They wanted to go deeper than 12km, but the temperature became unbearable for machinery sooner than expected
  • Enough funds were not available
  • The Soviet Union was dissolved
  • Machinery that could resist the heat and dig through the rocks were not available

The Al Shaheen oil well in Qatar is deeper but it’s not truly vertical. Therefore, Kola Superdeep Borehole is considered the deepest hole ever dug by humans.

How Deep Is the Deepest Hole Ever Dug By Humans?
  • A. 40520ft
  • B. 40480ft
  • C. 40320ft
  • D. 40230ft
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