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Integration of Theoretical, Laboratory, and Field Studies for Efficient Gas Hydrate Assessment and Acquisition

A special issue of Energies (ISSN 1996-1073). This special issue belongs to the section "A: Sustainable Energy".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 September 2020) | Viewed by 18328
11th International Methane Hydrate Research and Development Workshop

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Physical & Environmental Sciences, Texas A&M University, Corpus Christi, TX 78412, USA
Interests: methane; isotope geochemistry; carbon cycling; climate change; ocean models
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Guest Editor
Strategic Carbon LLC20 Ladd St., Suite 200, Portsmouth, NH 03801, USA
Interests: hydrate fundamentals; thermodynamics; non-equilibrium; statistical physics

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Guest Editor
Division of Applied Physics, Faculty of Engineering, Hokkaido University, Hokkaido, Japan
Interests: physical properties of gas hydrates; ice physics
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Guest Editor
Chief Technical Advisor, China National Offshore Oil Corporation, Beijing, China
Interests: offshore gas hydrate exploration and acquisition

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Guest Editor
Deputy Director, Research Institute of Energy Frontier, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (A(ST), Tsukuba-West, 16-1, Onogawa, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8569, Japan
Interests: modeling; numerical simulation; geomechanics
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The 12th International Methane Hydrate Research and Development (IMHRD) conference was held in Southwest Petroleum University from 1–3 November 2018. Over 500 delegates from the United States, Canada, Russia, the United Kingdom, Australia, Norway, South Korea, Japan, and other countries attended the conference. The participating representatives included 22 Chinese Academics, 69 foreign experts, and 19 Presidents of overseas universities. It was the first time that so many top experts in methane hydrate research gathered in China. They discussed the development and commercial use of methane hydrate in depth, achieving substantial results. We invite you to contribute to this Special Edition of Energies, where we focus on laboratory experiments, field assessment, and modeling of coastal gas hydrate loading and stability. 

Previous workshops were held in India, China, USA, Chile, Canada, Scotland, Norway, New Zealand, and Japan. The basic aim of this workshop, steered by an International Committee, is to provide a platform for deliberation, interaction, and sharing information on leading-edge topics such as natural systems, energy, environmental issues, advancements in production, etc. by an outstanding and diverse group of researchers/scientists from both academia and industries around the world, and to foster an opportunity for international collaboration.

The purpose of this Special Edition is to organize thorough data and information sharing that joins discussions at the workshop with the international gas hydrate research and development community. While this document focuses on the 12th IMHRD, it will include results from the 11th IMHRD that was held during December 2017 in Corpus Christi, Texas. Focus topics of the recent workshop included:

  1. Laboratory Experimentation: 1) Limitations on experimentation relative to the environment. 2) Mineral/hydrate/Fluid interactions focus on porous non-steady-state conditions.
  2. Gas Hydrate Related Modelling: Load Predictions, Coastal - Platform Stability, Environmental Safety.
  3. Gas Hydrate Deep Drilling: Technology, Recent Data.
  4. Carbon Storage Combined with Gas Hydrate Production: Concepts; Geomechanical Stability, Environmental Safety vs. Impact.
  5. Initial Site Assessment: Seismic and Geochemical Evaluation, Recent Data (Positive and Negative), Additional Approaches
  6. Biogeochemical Assessments of Gas Hydrate Loading and Monitoring Environmental Health

We are open to the inclusion of related topics. 

11th IMHRD WORKSHOP FINAL REPORT

Dr. Richard Coffin
Dr. Bjørn Kvamme
Dr. Tsutomu Uchida
Dr. Shouwei Zhou
Dr. Norio Tenma
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Energies is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • coastal gas hydrate assessment
  • laboratory model and data development
  • carbon dioxide sequestration
  • coastal and platform stability

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

13 pages, 2160 KiB  
Article
One-Dimensional Study on Hydrate Formation from Migrating Dissolved Gas in Sandy Sediments
by Nan Li, Rezeye Rehemituli, Jie Zhang and Changyu Sun
Energies 2020, 13(7), 1570; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13071570 - 30 Mar 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1785
Abstract
Upward migration of gas-dissolved pore fluid is an important mechanism for many naturally occurring hydrate reservoirs. However, there is limited understanding in this scenario of hydrate formation in sediments. In this preliminary work, hydrate formation and accumulation from dissolved gas in sandy sediments [...] Read more.
Upward migration of gas-dissolved pore fluid is an important mechanism for many naturally occurring hydrate reservoirs. However, there is limited understanding in this scenario of hydrate formation in sediments. In this preliminary work, hydrate formation and accumulation from dissolved gas in sandy sediments along the migration direction of brine was investigated using a visual hydrate simulator. Visual observation was employed to capture the morphology of hydrates in pores through three sapphire tubes. Meanwhile, the resistivity evolution of sediments was detected to characterize hydrate distribution in sediments. It was observed that hydrates initially formed as a thin film or dispersed crystals and then became a turbid colloidal solution. With hydrate growth, the colloidal solution converted to massive solid hydrates. Electrical resistivity experienced a three-stage evolution process corresponding to the three observed hydrate morphologies. The results of resistivity analysis also indicated that the bottom–up direction of hydrate growth was consistent with the flow direction of brine, and two hydrate accumulation centers successively appeared in the sediments. Hydrates preferentially formed and accumulated in certain depths of the sediments, resulting in heterogeneous hydrate distribution. Even under low saturation, the occurrence of heterogeneous hydrates led to the sharp reduction of sediment permeability. Full article
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15 pages, 6384 KiB  
Article
The Rule of Carrying Cuttings in Horizontal Well Drilling of Marine Natural Gas Hydrate
by Na Wei, Yang Liu, Zhenjun Cui, Lin Jiang, Wantong Sun, Hanming Xu, Xiaoran Wang and Tong Qiu
Energies 2020, 13(5), 1129; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13051129 - 03 Mar 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2181
Abstract
Horizontal well drilling is a highly effective way to develop marine gas hydrate. During the drilling of horizontal wells in the marine gas hydrate layer, hydrate particles and cutting particles will migrate with the drilling fluid in the horizontal annulus. The gravity of [...] Read more.
Horizontal well drilling is a highly effective way to develop marine gas hydrate. During the drilling of horizontal wells in the marine gas hydrate layer, hydrate particles and cutting particles will migrate with the drilling fluid in the horizontal annulus. The gravity of cuttings is easy to deposit in the horizontal section, leading to the accumulation of cuttings. Then, a cuttings bed will be formed, which is not beneficial to bring up cuttings and results in the decrease of wellbore purification ability. Then the extended capability of the horizontal well will be restricted and the friction torque of the drilling tool will increase, which may cause blockage of the wellbore in severe cases. Therefore, this paper establishes geometric models of different hole enlargement ways: right-angle expansion, 45-degree angle expansion, and arc expanding. The critical velocity of carrying rock plates are obtained by EDEM and FLUENT coupling simulation in different hydrate abundance, different hydrate-cuttings particle sizes and different drilling fluid density. Then, the effects of hole enlargement way, particle size, hydrate abundance and drilling fluid density on rock carrying capacity are analyzed by utilizing an orthogonal test method. Simulation results show that: the critical flow velocity required for carrying cuttings increases with the increase of the particle size of the hydrate-cuttings particle when the hydrate abundance is constant. The critical flow velocity decreases with the increase of drilling fluid density, the critical flow velocity carrying cuttings decreases with the increase of hydrate abundance when the density of the drilling fluid is constant. Orthogonal test method was used to evaluate the influence of various factors on rock carrying capacity: hydrate-cuttings particle size > hole enlargement way > hydrate abundance > drilling fluid density. This study provides an early technical support for the construction parameter optimization and well safety control of horizontal well exploitation models in a marine natural gas hydrate reservoir. Full article
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26 pages, 4814 KiB  
Article
Hydrate—A Mysterious Phase or Just Misunderstood?
by Bjørn Kvamme, Jinzhou Zhao, Na Wei and Navid Saeidi
Energies 2020, 13(4), 880; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13040880 - 17 Feb 2020
Cited by 20 | Viewed by 2263
Abstract
Hydrates that form during transport of hydrocarbons containing free water, or water dissolved in hydrocarbons, are generally not in thermodynamic equilibrium and depend on the concentration of all components in all phases. Temperature and pressure are normally the only variables used in hydrate [...] Read more.
Hydrates that form during transport of hydrocarbons containing free water, or water dissolved in hydrocarbons, are generally not in thermodynamic equilibrium and depend on the concentration of all components in all phases. Temperature and pressure are normally the only variables used in hydrate analysis, even though hydrates will dissolve by contact with pure water and water which is under saturated with hydrate formers. Mineral surfaces (for example rust) play dual roles as hydrate inhibitors and hydrate nucleation sites. What appears to be mysterious, and often random, is actually the effects of hydrate non-equilibrium and competing hydrate formation and dissociation phase transitions. There is a need to move forward towards a more complete non-equilibrium way to approach hydrates in industrial settings. Similar challenges are related to natural gas hydrates in sediments. Hydrates dissociates worldwide due to seawater that leaks into hydrate filled sediments. Many of the global resources of methane hydrate reside in a stationary situation of hydrate dissociation from incoming water and formation of new hydrate from incoming hydrate formers from below. Understanding the dynamic situation of a real hydrate reservoir is critical for understanding the distribution characteristics of hydrates in the sediments. This knowledge is also critical for designing efficient hydrate production strategies. In order to facilitate the needed analysis we propose the use of residual thermodynamics for all phases, including all hydrate phases, so as to be able to analyze real stability limits and needed heat supply for hydrate production. Full article
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34 pages, 6404 KiB  
Article
Hydrate Production Philosophy and Thermodynamic Calculations
by Bjørn Kvamme, Jinzhou Zhao, Na Wei, Wantong Sun, Navid Saeidi, Jun Pei and Tatiana Kuznetsova
Energies 2020, 13(3), 672; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13030672 - 04 Feb 2020
Cited by 28 | Viewed by 2127
Abstract
The amount of energy in the form of natural gas hydrates is huge and likely substantially more than twice the amount of worldwide conventional fossil fuel. Various ways to produce these hydrates have been proposed over the latest five decades. Most of these [...] Read more.
The amount of energy in the form of natural gas hydrates is huge and likely substantially more than twice the amount of worldwide conventional fossil fuel. Various ways to produce these hydrates have been proposed over the latest five decades. Most of these hydrate production methods have been based on evaluation of hydrate stability limits rather than thermodynamic consideration and calculations. Typical examples are pressure reduction and thermal stimulation. In this work we discuss some of these proposed methods and use residual thermodynamics for all phases, including the hydrate phase, to evaluate free energy changes related to the changes in independent thermodynamic variables. Pressures, temperatures and composition of all relevant phases which participate in hydrate phase transitions are independent thermodynamic variables. Chemical potential and free energies are thermodynamic responses that determine whether the desired phase transitions are feasible or not. The associated heat needed is related to the first law of thermodynamics and enthalpies. It is argued that the pressure reduction method may not be feasible since the possible thermal gradients from the surroundings are basically low temperature heat that is unable to break water hydrogen bonds in the hydrate–water interface efficiently. Injecting carbon dioxide, on the other hand, leads to formation of new hydrate which generates excess heat compared to the enthalpy needed to dissociate the in situ CH4 hydrate. But the rapid formation of new CO2 hydrate that can block the pores, and also the low permeability of pure CO2 in aquifers, are motivations for adding N2. Optimum mole fractions of N2 based on thermodynamic considerations are discussed. On average, less than 30 mole% N2 can be efficient and feasible. Thermal stimulation using steam or hot water is not economically feasible. Adding massive amounts of methanol or other thermodynamic inhibitors is also technically efficient but far from economically feasible. Full article
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15 pages, 5733 KiB  
Article
Evaluation of Experimental Setup and Procedure for Rapid Preparation of Natural Gas Hydrate
by Haitao Li, Na Wei, Lin Jiang, Jinzhou Zhao, Zhenjun Cui, Wantong Sun, Liehui Zhang, Shouwei Zhou, Hanming Xu, Xuchao Zhang, Chao Zhang and Xiaoran Wang
Energies 2020, 13(3), 531; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13030531 - 21 Jan 2020
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 1918
Abstract
The natural gas hydrate (NGH) reservoir in China is mainly distributed in the continental shelf with water depths ranging from 600–1500 m, about 90% of which is stored in the shallow area of the deep sea, with weak cementation and non-diagenetic characteristics. In [...] Read more.
The natural gas hydrate (NGH) reservoir in China is mainly distributed in the continental shelf with water depths ranging from 600–1500 m, about 90% of which is stored in the shallow area of the deep sea, with weak cementation and non-diagenetic characteristics. In order to test and study this type of NGH, samples must be prepared in situ, in large quantities, and at fast speed. At present, there are problems with the common stirring, spraying, and bubbling preparation techniques available, such as slow generation rate, low gas storage density, and lack of rapid preparation. Therefore, the rapid preparation of large samples of non-diagenetic natural gas hydrate has received extensive attention at home and abroad. In view of this technical bottleneck, Southwest Petroleum University innovatively established a rapid preparation kettle of 1062 L. In this paper, the preparation experiment of natural gas hydrate in the South China Sea (the pressure of the preparation kettle was reduced from 7 MPa to 3.3 MPa) was carried out in the preparation method of the ‘three-in-one’ (stirring method, spraying method, bubbling method) and experimental test method. In the process of preparation of non-diagenetic gas hydrate, the data of dynamic image, temperature, pressure, electrical resistivity, and reaction time are tested. During the preparation of natural gas hydrate, temperature, pressure, and electrical resistivity curves in four preparation methods were made, respectively. Through the experimental data analysis of different preparation methods of natural gas hydrate, it has been found that the preparation time of natural gas hydrate using the stirring method, the spraying method, and the bubbling method alone require a longer preparation time. However, when the three-in-one method is used to prepare natural gas hydrate, the preparation cycle of natural gas hydrate is obviously shortened. The preparation time of the single method of stirring method, spraying method, and bubbling method is respectively about 5.13, 3.59, and 3.37 times as long as that of three-in-one method. The three-in-one method for preparing natural gas hydrate greatly improves the preparation efficiency, which has a great significance to the scientific and technological progress of experimental research and evaluation methods of natural gas hydrate. Full article
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22 pages, 3027 KiB  
Article
Hydrate Formation and Decomposition Regularities in Offshore Gas Reservoir Production Pipelines
by Na Wei, Wantong Sun, Yingfeng Meng, Jinzhou Zhao, Bjørn Kvamme, Shouwei Zhou, Liehui Zhang, Qingping Li, Yao Zhang, Lin Jiang, Haitao Li and Jun Pei
Energies 2020, 13(1), 248; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13010248 - 03 Jan 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2859
Abstract
In recent years, the exploitation and utilization of offshore oil and gas resources have attracted more attention. In offshore gas reservoir production, wellbore temperature and pressure change continuously when water-bearing natural gas flows upward. The wellbore temperature is also affected by the low-temperature [...] Read more.
In recent years, the exploitation and utilization of offshore oil and gas resources have attracted more attention. In offshore gas reservoir production, wellbore temperature and pressure change continuously when water-bearing natural gas flows upward. The wellbore temperature is also affected by the low-temperature sea water. The combination of temperatures and pressures controlled by the upward flow, and cooling from the surrounding seawater frequently leads to the conditions of temperature and pressure for hydrate formation. This can lead to pipeline blockage and other safety accidents. In this study, we utilize mathematical models of hydrate phase equilibrium, wellbore temperature, wellbore pressure to study hydrate formation and decomposition in offshore gas reservoir production. Numerical solution algorithms are developed and numerical solutions are validated. The sensitivity influence of different parameters on the regions and regularities of hydrate formation and decomposition in wellbores are obtained through numerical simulations. It is found that increased daily gas production, water content, or geothermal gradient in offshore gas reservoir production pipelines results in less hydrate formation in the wellbores. Accordingly, the risk of wellbore blockage decreases and production safety is maintained. Decreased tubing head pressure or seawater depth results in similar effects. The result of this study establishes a set of prediction methods for hydrate formation and decomposition that can be used in the development of guidelines for safe construction design. Full article
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26 pages, 2698 KiB  
Article
Enthalpies of Hydrate Formation and Dissociation from Residual Thermodynamics
by Solomon Aforkoghene Aromada, Bjørn Kvamme, Na Wei and Navid Saeidi
Energies 2019, 12(24), 4726; https://doi.org/10.3390/en12244726 - 11 Dec 2019
Cited by 29 | Viewed by 4639
Abstract
We have proposed a consistent thermodynamic scheme for evaluation of enthalpy changes of hydrate phase transitions based on residual thermodynamics. This entails obtaining every hydrate property such as gas hydrate pressure-temperature equilibrium curves, change in free energy which is the thermodynamic driving force [...] Read more.
We have proposed a consistent thermodynamic scheme for evaluation of enthalpy changes of hydrate phase transitions based on residual thermodynamics. This entails obtaining every hydrate property such as gas hydrate pressure-temperature equilibrium curves, change in free energy which is the thermodynamic driving force in kinetic theories, and of course, enthalpy changes of hydrate dissociation and formation. Enthalpy change of a hydrate phase transition is a vital property of gas hydrate. However, experimental data in literature lacks vital information required for proper understanding and interpretation, and indirect methods of obtaining this important hydrate property based on the Clapeyron and Clausius-Clapeyron equations also have some limitations. The Clausius-Clapeyron approach for example involves oversimplifications that make results obtained from it to be inconsistent and unreliable. We have used our proposed approach to evaluate consistent enthalpy changes of hydrate phase transitions as a function of temperature and pressure, and hydration number for CH4 and CO2. Several results in the literature of enthalpy changes of hydrate dissociation and formation from experiment, and Clapeyron and Clausius-Clapeyron approaches have been studied which show a considerable disagreement. We also present the implication of these enthalpy changes of hydrate phase transitions to environmentally friendly production of energy from naturally existing CH4 hydrate and simultaneously storing CO2 on a long-term basis as CO2 hydrate. We estimated enthalpy changes of hydrate phase transition for CO2 to be 10–11 kJ/mol of guest molecule greater than that of CH4 within a temperature range of 273–280 K. Therefore, the exothermic heat liberated when a CO2 hydrate is formed is greater or more than the endothermic heat needed for dissociation of the in-situ methane hydrate. Full article
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