The earliest use of coal in the world was in China. In the Book of The Mountain and the Sea, a folkstory book in 221 B.C, coal was still called stone. In Ming dynasty, Compendium of Materia Medica firstly used the word coal. As the famous coal province in China, Shanxi has been abundant with coals since the orgin of human beings. Till today, they still have the site of the legendary goddness named Nuwa trying to fix the sky with coal stones.
The Coal Museum of China is located in Taiyuan, the capital city of Shanxi Province. It was built in the year of 1989, covering an area of 90,000 square meters. Here tourists can get to learn the knowledge of the coal and still have fun. The museum is formed with Seven Halls and One Well. The Seven Halls are The origin of the Coal, Coal and Human Beings, Coal Development, Modern Chinese Coal Industry, Coal Art, Coal Literature and Simulation Scene.
Stepping into the prologue hall, a strong atmosphere of the coal is embracing you right away. World Coal source distribution with the size of 15 square meters, huge coal relief pillar in 6 meters high, a stove of fire symbolizing the spripit of coal-Burning itself and dedicating to the human race. In the Coal Origin hall, museum desginer vividly picture where coals come from and how human firstly discovered them through a series of fossils, specimens and geological literature.
There is a skull dinosaur, which is the only dinosaur fossil found in coal seam all over the world. Dating back to 1878 in Belgium, a mine worker found some strange looking stones when he was digging tunnel coal seam. He gatherer some of his coworkers and carried them on the ground, later scientists confirmed those were skleleton fossils of dinosaurs. The original fossial is still in the Royal Museum of Belgium, what we see now is only copy. As the visting goes, coals are getting more and more interesting for me. It is not only just a stone, it’s more like a symbol of life.
In the 4D theatre, feel free to travel back time and see the living environment Jurassic age, with scary dinosaurs and tall prehistoric trees, experiencing hoarsing wind, deafening thunder, pouring rain and horrible volcano eruption, seeing how coals form in such scene. More amazingly, all of this happen in 6 minutes, it sounds short but when you are actually in it, it feels kinda long especially in eruption part.
Here comes the best part of the museum, also my favorite-The Simulation Coal Well. Being the largest underground simulation coal well, it covers an area of 3200 square meters, visiting route of 800 meters. There are 8 scenes in general, which are Ancient Coal Pit, Coal Transporting Route, Modern Coal Transporting Route, Coal Processing Scene, Geological Tunnel, Mechanized Mining, and Screenplay Zone. Using the developing history as the storyline, tourists can have a almost-real experience in coal mining in the well.