Work has begun in the Finnish town of Outokumpu to dig Finland's deepest mine. As reported by the news agency STT, workers of the Finnish Center for Geological Research have placed their research project directly where the future mine will be located. The mine, which will reach a record depth for Finland of 2.5 kilometers by the spring of 2005.
Drilling will be carried out by the Russian government-owned company Nedra and will be financed out of Soviet-era debt to Finland, which totals roughly 7 million euros. The Russian drillers will work in Outokumpu using the shift method, employing teams of 25 people at a time.
The town of Outokumpu was chosen as the site of a mine for scientific research because the area's ore deposits are of considerable interest to Finland. With the help of the mine, which will measure 22 centimeters, Finnish scientists will be able to study the various structures of the Earth's core and its geophysical characteristics, in particular the electrical conductivity of the area's rock strata, its magnetic properties, its temperature and composition.
The company Nedra has a wealth of experience drilling deep shafts, the most famous of which is the shaft on the Kola Peninsula, which has a depth of 12.3 kilometers.