Effects of multiphase methane supply on hydrate accumulation and fracture generation
Article first published online: 19 OCT 2010
Copyright 2010 by the American Geophysical Union.
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume 37, Issue 20, October 2010
How to Cite
2010), Effects of multiphase methane supply on hydrate accumulation and fracture generation, Geophys. Res. Lett., 37, L20301, doi:10.1029/2010GL044970., and (
- Issue published online: 19 OCT 2010
- Article first published online: 19 OCT 2010
- Manuscript Accepted: 13 SEP 2010
- Manuscript Revised: 7 SEP 2010
- Manuscript Received: 2 AUG 2010
- methane hydrates;
- sediment fracturing
 We simulate methane hydrate formation with multiphase flow and free gas within the regional hydrate stability zone (RHSZ). We find that hydrate distribution and fracture behavior are largely determined by the phase of the methane supply. We allow free gas to enter the RHSZ when porewater salinity increases to the value required for three-phase equilibrium. Fractures nucleate when the excess pore pressure exceeds the vertical hydrostatic effective stress. At Hydrate Ridge, where methane supply is dominantly free gas, hydrate saturation increases upwards and fractures nucleate high within the RHSZ, eventually allowing gas to vent to the seafloor. At Blake Ridge, where methane supply is dominantly in the dissolved phase, hydrate saturation is greatest at the base of the RHSZ; fractures nucleate here and in some cases could propagate through the RHSZ, allowing methane-charged water to vent to the seafloor.