China is home to the world’s largest reserves of shale gas, but 80 per cent of it is located beyond the range of traditional fracking technology, as used at this well in Chongqing. Photo: Xinhua

Is China’s plan to use a nuclear bomb detonator to release shale gas in earthquake-prone Sichuan crazy or brilliant?

  • Scientists have developed an ‘energy rod’ that can fire multiple shock waves to frack sedimentary rock at depths of up to 3.5km
  • China has the world’s largest reserves of natural gas but current mining technology makes most of it inaccessible
Topic |   China science

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China is home to the world’s largest reserves of shale gas, but 80 per cent of it is located beyond the range of traditional fracking technology, as used at this well in Chongqing. Photo: Xinhua
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Stephen Chen

Stephen Chen

Stephen Chen investigates major research projects in China, a new power house of scientific and technological innovation. He has worked for the Post since 2006. He is an alumnus of Shantou University, the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and the Semester at Sea programme which he attended with a full scholarship from the Seawise Foundation.