2013 Top 10 Geological Survey Progresses

Top2. South China Sea reported high-purity new-type natural gas hydrate

Updated :03,04,2014

        From Jun 1 to Sept 8, 2013, a drilling operation was carried out on the favorable natural hydrate target delineated in the east waters of the Pearl River MouthBasin. 23 drill holes were implemented in succession. Physical samples of high-purity novel-type natural hydrate were intercepted for the first time in these waters, which were mainly hosted in two ore beds within 220m below the 600-1100m for sea floor. The upper bed is 15m thick and the lower bed 30m thick. The natural attitude is stratiform, massive, nodular or veined. The natural hydrate in the core shows an average ore-bearing rate of 45-55%. The natural hydrate samples are richest in methane that can be as high as 99%. They are characterized by shallow depth, large thickness, great variety, high ore-bearing rate and high methane purity, which is rarely found in the world. The controlled reserve of natural hydrate within the 55km2 area controlled by drilling alone is as high as 100-150 billion cubic meters, equivalent to the size of an ultralarge conventional gas field. This is another major breakthrough following the interception of physical samples of scattered natural hydrate in the Shenhu waters of South China Sea in 2007, and provides a solid foundation for further locking the trial exploitation target to allow for earliest natural hydrate development and secure energy supply.

     (massive)               (nodular)               (veined)     
Type of physical natural hydrate samples