Abstract

The main reserves of methane on our planet are in the form of gas hydrate and more than 90% of them are at the bottom of the oceans. Scientists in many countries are making active efforts to establish effective technology for the development of gas hydrate deposits and, primarily located in the sedimentary rocks of the ocean floor. However, the first experience indicates that the development costs of gas hydrate deposits are very high. One of the main reasons for the high cost of recovering methane hydrate is the high value of the decomposition's thermal effect. The heat of methane hydrate decomposition is 410 kJ/kg, that 30% exceeds, even energy intensive process, as the melting water ice. We have proposed and patented the way to develop marine gas hydrate deposits without the cost of thermal energy and using of any environmentally hazardous substances.

The method consists in grinding of sediment filled of methane hydrate and its subsequent lifting platform by the pipeline in the form of a suspension in seawater. When lifting the hydrate-contained suspension crosses the line of phase equilibrium and goes out of his stable thermodynamic state. Decomposition of gas hydrate phase in this case will be provided at the expense of the sea water crystallization energy. In the pipeline the conversion of gas hydrate slurry in the slurry containing of water, ice particles and gas, released from gas hydrate happen. It should be noted that the methane gas released from the hydrate, creates a lifting force in the pipe, thus avoiding the energy costs for transporting hydrate-contained rock on the surface.

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