First sampling of gas hydrate from the Vøring Plateau



Methane hydrate is a clathrate, an ice-like solid formed from methane and water, that is stable under conditions of pressure and temperature found in most of the world's oceans at depths greater than a few hundred meters. Hydrate occurs beneath the seabed where there is sufficient methane to exceed its solubility in water within the hydrate stability field. It has been speculated that methane released from hydrate by climate-induced changes in pressure and temperature escapes into the ocean and into the atmosphere, where its acts as a greenhouse gas. Further, methane from beneath the seabed is the primary energy source for communities of chemosynthetic biota at the seabed.