Idea #621 – Approaching the Mouth of Hell in Darwaza, Turkmenistan
In 1970, during a Soviet mining exploration, a team of geologists drilled the soil in search of a deposit in this region particularly rich in natural gas. The drilling is positive, and a pocket of gas is detected at 1000 meters deep; unfortunately, the local rock formations have instabilities, with many underground cavities, and accidentally, the drill tower collapses, carried away by a subsidence of ground.
At its location there is a gaping, crater-shaped hole that continues to grow, finally stabilizing at almost 70 meters in diameter. To avoid the risk of explosion and atmospheric pollution, it was decided to ignite the gases that emanate from the well. Geologists felt that the reserves would run out in a few weeks, but the well has burned continuously since 1971 … Locally, the place is nicknamed “the door of hell” (derweze meaning “door” in Turkmen).
This problem is repeated in several places, and several craters are currently visible, sometimes filled with water or sludge, always presenting strings of gas bubbles. In April 2010, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow signed a decree aimed at extinguishing the crater of Darwaza, but it is still active in 2019, for lack of technical solutions to extinguish it.
Where is it ?