What Are Baigong Pipes?
The Baigong pipes are a series of pipe-like features found on and near Mount Baigong, about 40 km southwest of the city of Delingha, in the Haixi Mongol and Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Qinghai Province, China. Some of the Baigong pipes are reported to be associated with three caves in Mount Baigong.
These caves are reported to occur within the front face of Mount Baigong. The mouths of the two smaller caves have collapsed. Only the largest cave, which is 6 meters (18 feet) high, can be entered. The vague resemblance of the top of Mount Baigong to a pyramid has been the focus of speculation.
Two pipe-like structures have been reported from the largest cave. One of these is described as being 40 cm (16 in) in diameter, one only preserved as a reddish-brown half-pipe formation. Dozens of upright pipe-like features, about 10 to 40 cm (4 to 16 inches) in diameter, were also found protruding from Mount Baigong above the largest cave.
Associated with these pipe-like features are objects that were described as “rusty scraps” and “strangely shaped stones”. Analysis of the former by Liu Shaolin at a local smeltery reportedly found that they consist of 30 percent ferric oxide (oxidized iron) and large amounts of silicon dioxide and calcium oxide.
Because any metallurgical analysis reports the composition of a material analyzed not in terms of the actual minerals comprising it, but only in terms of percentages of the oxides of the specific elements present, the calcium present in the analyzed material could have been in the form of calcite, a mineral that naturally forms concretions.
According to news stories, the pipes were first discovered by a group of scientists from the United States who were seeking dinosaur fossils. The scientists are said to have reported the formations to local authorities in Delingha. However, the pipes did not attract attention until a later report, possibly one of six made by Ye Zhou, appeared in the Henan Dahe Bao (‘Henan Great River News’) in June 2002.
Quin Jianwen, a local official, discussed the pipe-like features with journalists of the Xinhua News Agency on June 16, 2002. The local government now promotes the features as a tourist attraction, to which road signs and tourist guides lead visitors.
According to a 2003 article in the Xinmin Weekly, Chinese scientists using atomic emission spectroscopy found the Baigong Pipes to contain organic matter of plant origin. In addition, the news article also stated that tree rings were found in sections of these rock formations and, as a result, they were judged to be fossil trees or tree roots.
However, like many other aspects of the “Baigong pipes”, this news report remains unsupported by either any scientific publication or other reliable primary or secondary source that discusses and documents these findings in any detail.
Further experiments confirmed that the pipes contain organic plant material and even microscopic tree rings. Overflow from an extinct lake once carried these roots to where they stand now. So while they aren’t part of an alien sewer system, the pipes are evidence of the Earth’s ability to create strange and remarkable objects.
The state-run newspaper People’s Daily reported on a 2007 investigation in which a research fellow from the Chinese Earthquake Administration reported they had found some of the pipes to be highly radioactive.
Local legend speculates that Mt. Baigong in the Qinghai Province of China is an ancient extraterrestrial laboratory. Aside from the mysterious pyramid that crowns the mountain, three triangular entrances at the mountain’s base lead the way to hundreds of decrepit metal pipe-like structures of unknown origin.
The rusty tubes, ranging from needle-size to 16 inches in diameter, reach from deep inside the mountain to a saltwater lake 260 feet away. Many of the hollow pipes are uniform in size and seem to be placed purposefully. The ancient objects are embedded deep enough into the mountain wall and floor to preclude modern human handling.
The inhospitable environment surrounding the mountain sees only the occasional nomad. Unless these wanderers developed secret advanced metallurgy skills, the pipes were not formed by human hands. The obvious inference is that these red-hued tubes were transported here from outer space as part of an alien public works project. This Martian theory has garnered so much support that a monument topped off with a corroded satellite dish has been erected near the mountain.