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Methane hydrates are ice-like inclusion compounds, in which every volume of hydrate can contain as much as 180 volumes (STP) of gas.The amount of methane in natural gas hydrates is twice the total recoverable fossil fuel reserve. Because of their natural abundance in oceans and permafrost, hydrates have become an exciting national and international research issue. The movement of the gas and oil industry to ever deepening waters where hydrates occur, the compelling size and distribution of hydrate deposits, and strong international interest all support identification of crucial elements in a hydrate research program.