Exploring Hydrocarbon Depletion
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Here in Canada, here is our breakdown of electricity.
That's not true.
Laherrere has provided two papers that show there is no evidence from all the worldwide research and extensive coring for any massive hydrate deposits. http://dieoff.com/page192.htm -- http://dieoff.com/page225.htm . According to Fleay:
Gas hydrates resources on the ocean floor are formed at depth where the pressure is high enough and the temperature low enough which means the hydrates are DISPERSED and not amenable to processes to concentrate them in large reservoirs as happens with natural gas and oil. For this reason the cost of extracting them would be formidable and would certainly end up being an energy SINK not a source. Jean Laherrere is well informed on this having been involved in exploring for ocean floor gas hydrates.
Hydrocarbons in the deep Earth?
National Science Foundation, NASA Astrobiology Institute, US Department of Energy, National Nuclear Security Administration, Carnegie/DOE Alliance CenterWashington, D.C. In an era of rising oil and gas prices, the possibility that there are untapped reserves is enticing. Since the first U.S. oil well hit pay dirt in 1859, commercially viable wells of oil and gas commonly have been drilled no deeper than 3 to 5 miles into Earth's crust. "These experiments point to the possibility of an inorganic source of hydrocarbons at great depth in the Earth--that is, hydrocarbons that come from simple reactions between water and rock and not just from the decomposition of living organisms," stated Dr. Russell Hemley of the Carnegie Institution's Geophysical Laboratory, and co-author of a study published in the September 13-17, early, on-line edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.*
Methane is the most abundant hydrocarbon in the Earth's crust and it is the main component of natural gas. Often, gas reserves are accompanied by liquid petroleum. However these reserves, at 3 to 5 miles beneath the surface, exist in relatively low-pressure conditions. Whether hydrocarbons exist deeper--and could even be formed from non-biological matter--has been the subject of much debate. As depth increases in the Earth, the pressures can become so crushing that molecules are squeezed into new forms and the temperature conditions are like an inferno making matter behave much differently. The team of scientists performed a series of experiments at Carnegie, the Carnegie-managed High Pressure Collaborative Access Team (HPCAT) at Argonne National Laboratory, and at Indiana University South Bend--together with calculations performed at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory--to mimic conditions that occur in Earth's upper mantle, which underlies the crust at depths of about 12 to 37 miles (20 to 60 km) beneath the continents.
With a diamond anvil cell, the scientists squeezed materials common at Earth's surface--iron oxide (FeO), calcite (CaCO3) and water-- to pressures ranging from 50,000 to 110,000 times the pressure at sea level ( 5 to 11 gigapascals). They heated the samples using two techniques--focused laser light and the so-called resistive heating method--to temperatures up to 2,700 degrees F (1500 degrees C). The researchers found that methane formed by reducing the carbon in calcite over a wide range of temperatures and pressures. The best conditions were at temperatures and pressures of about 1000 degrees F and less than 70,000 times atmospheric pressure.
Dr. Henry Scott, of Indiana University South Bend, related the significance of the experiments to conventional hydrocarbon resources: "Although it is well-established that commercial petroleum originates from the decay of once-living organisms, these results support the possibility that the deep Earth may produce abiogenic hydrocarbons of its own."
"This paper is important," remarked Dr. Freeman Dyson, professor emeritus at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton who reviewed the study. "Not because it settles the question whether the origin of natural gas and petroleum is organic or inorganic, but because it gives us tools to attack the question experimentally. If the answer turns out to be inorganic, this has huge implications for the ecology and economy of our planet as well as for the chemistry of other planets."
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So, does this one mean that all our energy prayers are answered?
Well not likely. Ignoring the issue of greenhouse emissions, the deepest borehole ever drilled was 12.26km deep, the Kola Superdeep Borehole (KSDB) in Kola, Russia. KSDB was itself was a remarkable engineering feat, considering the second deepest scientific borehole was barely 4km deep.
Drilling to 100km is probably well beyond our abilities, but if possible could lead to the most expensive dry hole ever drilled — so it seems unlikely it would be even attempted.
Other factors are of course involved. Traditionally recoverable oil and gas exist in pourous rock above a water aquifer which provides the necessary pressure. The mere presence of hydrocarbons in the crust is not enough to make them viable energy sources. Likewise, in the case of the mantle, at depths of 100km, the mere presence of hydrocarbons does not mean that we can extract them economically. For instance, it may be that methane only moves only very slowly through the high pressure rock at such depths, making the whole exercise pointless. -AF
MarkR wrote:Brown's gas is hardly an anomalous compound. It is simply a stoichiometric mixture of hydrogen and oxygen; no more, no less.
The proposed project calls for WSI Mostoller Landfill to pipe its liquid waste to the prison's sewage treatment plant and in return allow SCI-Laurel Highlands to use methane gas off the tip of the landfill to run its boiler plant, DOC officials said.
When this semi-submersible drilling vessel enters the Gulf of Mexico later this month it will embark researchers on a 35-day voyage of discovery that is part of an effort to map a virtually inexhaustible supply of energy - the methane hydrate that may represent up to 200,000 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.
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