News, Culture & Society

Inside the ‘supercave’ in China that can fit four Great Pyramids

A visit to one of the world’s largest cave chambers could feel like a journey into the unknown.

Located in the mountainous region of Ziyun county in southern China, the huge Miao Room cavern measures 380.7 million cubic feet (10.78 million cubic metres) in volume.

The Color Toner Experts

It is the largest cave in the world by volume and ranked second largest in surface area.  

Expedition members row into the Miao Room Chamber, China’s largest cave chamber by volume, in Ziyun County, Guizhou Province, south-west China. It is ranked second in surface area to the Sarawak Chamber in Malaysia

The sprawling 1.27 million square feet (117,986 square meters) cave in south-west China is ranked second in surface area to Malaysia's Sarawak Chamber that has about 1.66 million square feet (154,500 square meters) of expanse

The sprawling 1.27 million square feet (117,986 square meters) cave in south-west China is ranked second in surface area to Malaysia’s Sarawak Chamber that has about 1.66 million square feet (154,500 square meters) of expanse

The sprawling 1.27 million-square-foot (117,986-square-metres) cave is only second to Malaysia’s Sarawak Chamber, which has about 1.66 million square feet (154,500 square metres) of expanse. 

The massive area is equivalent to the size of 22 football fields and can even fit four copies of the Great Pyramid of Giza in its cavern.

At 2,795 ft long, it can also comfortably fit a Boeing 747 inside.

A joint 19-day caving expedition named ‘Pearl’ kicked off on April 11 by explorers and scientists from China and France.

The incredible footage of the cavern released on Monday shows a pitch black hole that marks the foreboding entrance of the cave located at Getu River.   

A joint 19-day caving expedition named 'Pearl' kicked off on April 11 by explorers and scientists from China and France

A joint 19-day caving expedition named ‘Pearl’ kicked off on April 11 by explorers and scientists from China and France

Expedition members take picture of pillars of stalactites within the Miao Room Chamber

Expedition members take picture of pillars of stalactites within the Miao Room Chamber

The stream passage then leads to the labyrinth's entrance hall, which is covered by an alien landscape of stalagmites

The stream passage then leads to the labyrinth’s entrance hall, which is covered by an alien landscape of stalagmites

The stream passage then leads to the labyrinth’s entrance hall, which is covered by an alien landscape of enormous stalagmites. 

These dramatic rock formations are said to be as tall as 148ft (45 metres), which are among the world’s largest.

These formed thanks to the cave being located under a sea for 600 million years, accumulating miles-thick layers of sediments such as limestone in the process. 

A stream would flow through the central canyon during rainy periods, deepening the chamber and transporting fallen rocks. 

At times, water comes up from a shaft in the floor.  

The underground  is also a maze of fossils and crystals, creating a surreal sparkling wonderland

The underground miracle is also a maze of fossils and crystals, creating a surreal sparkling wonderland.

Daniela Pani (foreground), Andy Eavis (right) and Roo Walters set up a laser scanner near the flooded entrance gallery in an 2013 expedition to measure the cavern in great detail using the cutting-edge laser-mapping technology (file photo)

Daniela Pani (foreground), Andy Eavis (right) and Roo Walters set up a laser scanner near the flooded entrance gallery in an 2013 expedition to measure the cavern in great detail using the cutting-edge laser-mapping technology (file photo)

In 2013, a British-led expedition used a cutting-edge laser scanner to measure several cave systems in unprecedented detail, including Gebihe's Miao Room, modeled here from the original laser data. The cave can comfortably fit a Boeing 747

In 2013, a British-led expedition used a cutting-edge laser scanner to measure several cave systems in unprecedented detail, including Gebihe’s Miao Room, modeled here from the original laser data. The cave can comfortably fit a Boeing 747

House-size boulders and giant rocks stack on top of each other on stone hills within the natural wonder. 

The underground miracle is also a maze of fossils and crystals, creating a surreal sparkling wonderland.

The camera then pans up to reveal a large rock pillar, very much like a white concrete waterfall frozen in time.

The Miao Room opens into a large dome towards the end of the chamber, scattered with debris from cave collapses.

By studying this debris, researchers hope to better understand how chambers grow. 

Named the Miao Room after the South China ethnic group living in the area, the immense cave rests within the Gebihe cave system underneath China’s Ziyun Getu He Chuandong National Park. 

 A stream would flow through the central canyon during rainy periods, deepening the chamber and transporting fallen rocks

 A stream would flow through the central canyon during rainy periods, deepening the chamber and transporting fallen rocks

An expedition member takes pictures of super mud slopes that forms the world's largest cavern

An expedition member takes pictures of super mud slopes that forms the world’s largest cavern

The immense cave rests within the Gebihe cave system underneath China's Ziyun Getu He Chuandong National Park

The immense cave rests within the Gebihe cave system underneath China’s Ziyun Getu He Chuandong National Park

The scanning team downloads data to view a 3-D image of the cave before picking the location for the next scan (file photo)

The scanning team downloads data to view a 3-D image of the cave before picking the location for the next scan (file photo)

Although the massive cave was first documented by a Chinese-European geology team in 1989, its true size was not determined until 2013. 

A British team working at Institute of Karst Geology in Guilan measured it in detail using cutting-edge laser-mapping technology.

The expedition revealed that the cave is the world’s largest, exceeding the previous record holder of the Sarawak Chamber by 10 per cent, according to a previous National Geographic report. 

The province of Guizhou is home to a plethora of large caves.

Approximately 260 miles (417 kilometres) away in Suiyang County, visitors can find the Shuanghe Cave Network, the longest cave in Asia at 782,414 ft (238.48 kilometres), which is nearly the distance between London and Manchester.  

The impressive structure is comprised of eight main caverns and more than 200 entrances. 

Approximately 260 miles (417 kilometres) away in Suiyang County, visitors can find the Shuanghe Cave Network, the longest cave in Asia at 782,414 ft (238.48 kilometres), which is nearly the distance between London and Manchester

Approximately 260 miles (417 kilometres) away in Suiyang County, visitors can find the Shuanghe Cave Network, the longest cave in Asia at 782,414 ft (238.48 kilometres), which is nearly the distance between London and Manchester

Researchers believe Shuanghe cave was formed around 100 million years ago and can help them understand climate change 

Researchers believe Shuanghe cave was formed around 100 million years ago and can help them understand climate change 



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


Comments are closed.