Kola Super Deep Borehole - World's Deepest Hole

Old facility of kola super deep borehole

'Kola Super Deep Borehole' is the deepest hole ever drilled and is still the deepest artificial point on Earth. The main objective of this drill was to drill as deep as possible into the Earth.

Kola Super Deep Borehole Project : Background

This scientific drilling project was undertaken by Soviet Union in 1970. Drilling began on twenty-fourth day of May 1970 in the kola peninsula and continued breaking records of all sorts. Many holes were drilled branching from the center. The deepest of these holes is the hole SG-3, which reached a depth of 12,262 meters (more than 40,000 ft) in 1989 .

In 1979 they broke the world record previously held by Bertha Rogers hole at 9,583 meters. In 1983, the depth reached 12,000 meters causing a big celebration and the drilling was stopped. This stoppage of the project for about a year for celebrations contributed to the breakdown of the drilling rig. 

Also read : Krubera cave - Deepest cave on Earth

Kola super deep borehole entrance welded shut
Image credits : Wikipedia

Then drilling was later started and estimation suggested that they would reach a depth of 15,000 meters within 1993. This could not be achieved because of the unfeasible conditions. The drilling was stopped permanently in 1992.

Also read : Eiksund tunnel - Deepest tunnel

Achievements of the project

  • It has set a new record of 12,262 kilometers.
  • A large quantity of unexpected hydrogen gas was discovered. 
  • It had penetrated the Baltic continental crust, reaching the 'Archean age' which is more than 2.5 billion years old. By this fact, the site became extensive for geophysical studies.

But, its fate was sealed. The project was abandoned in 2005 due to lack of finance. Everything from Drilling rig to the research equipments were sold at Scrap yard and the hole has been sealed since 2008.

 Also read : Axolotl salamander - curious creature for researchers
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