The China National Petroleum Corporation is currently working on one of the largest oil drillings in the history of the planet. According to Chinese news agency Xinhua, the operations which began on May 30 will make it possible to reach a depth of 11,100 meters, which represents approximately 0.09% of the diameter of the Earth. It is in a continental desert located in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, in the northwest of the country, that the company settled, raconte New Scientist.
It will not be the deepest drilling in history, the title remaining retained by Russia with the 12,262 meters deep of the forage sg3 made in the Kola Peninsula, not far from Scandinavia. But it had taken nineteen years to be dug: the drilling operations had indeed lasted from 1970 to 1989.
The Chinese project, currently known as Project Deep Earth 1-Yuejin 3-3XC Well, will be executed much faster, since according to Sinopec, a refining company also involved in the case, the maximum depth should be reached in 457 days, or fifteen months. This drilling will therefore be fifteen times faster than that completed by the Russians in 1989.
For the companies in charge of this drilling, it is almost a routine operation, since in the Chinese Tarim basin alone, and more precisely in the oil and gas field of Shunbei, the company Sinopec has already dug forty -nine wells deeper than 8,000 meters.
According to official statements, the drilling which started on May 30 could also allow geologists and paleontologists to carry out research in rarely explored areas. It must be said that at the deepest, we will reach rocks that were formed during the Cretaceous, a geological period that started 145 million years ago and ended 66 million years ago.
But scientists hardly believe it, saying that oil extraction is not compatible with their work. “When we dig for research purposes, we do our best not to come across oil or gas”explains the American teacher Edward Sobel, who went to Stanford and is now employed by the German University of Potsdam.
Source: Slate.fr by www.slate.fr.
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