This video clip, "Strange Hole in the desert Blows Sand into the air in Saudi Arabia" (alternative link), shows a hole in the desert that erupts like a geyser, except with sand instead of water. It is apparently located in the Aljof area in the north of Saudi Arabia.

The commenters on this video (and its duplicates) have come up with many conjectures, including:

  • natural gas from a freshly-drilled mine
  • a broken pipeline underneath.
  • a pressure build up of certain gases, like methane.
  • a fake video.
  • seismic or volcanic activity.

Can anyone explain what this phenomena is?

migrated from May 23 '16 at 0:58

This question came from our site for scientific skepticism.

  • 2
    That is a copy of this better quality video, and the comments below it explain/suggest what's going on. – Jan Doggen May 23 '16 at 11:15
  • @JabDoggen The YouTube account behind your link is gone and so is the video. However, the original story at the Daily Mail linked by OP is still there. – Spencer Jan 20 at 14:50

Blowholes are formed through small openings in the ground through which air will blow out or suck in.They have been likened to natural fans or vacuums.Blowholes are dependent on weather: air temperature and pressure interact to create the stunning effects when air travels from higher to lower density. When outside air warms up, it may eventually become the same density as air underground, causing air flow at the blowhole to stop.This outside air continues to warm up, causing air to begin blowing out of the hole.

  • 4
    Are you suggesting that this is a natural blowhole? To/from what then? – Jan Doggen Jul 27 '16 at 19:32

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