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Primeur weekly 2020-03-16

Focus

EuroHPC work programme 2020 calls for consolidation type of projects with a budget of 170 million euro ...

Details of the three upcoming 2020 EuroHPC JU Calls for Proposals ...

EuroHPC JU will move to the Drosbach building in Luxembourg ...

Exascale supercomputing

MEEP Project: A flexible system supporting next generation European open source software and hardware ...

Ying-Chih Yang joins SiPearl as CTO ...

Quantum computing

Preparing Ireland for quantum - Irish Centre for High-End Computing brings prestigious European Quantum Technologies Conference to Dublin ...

Finnish researchers look at noisy quantum computer ...

NSF CAREER Award supports framework for photons as quantum transistors ...

Engineers crack 58-year-old puzzle on way to quantum breakthrough ...

New error correction method provides key step toward quantum computing ...

IDC survey finds optimism that quantum computing will result in competitive advantage ...

Focus on Europe

New HLRS "Hawk" supercomputer to deliver unparalleled performance, capacity, and density for science and research ...

It is time to register for the Supercomputing Frontiers 2020 virtual conference ...

Middleware

SDSC announces comprehensive data sharing resource ...

Hardware

Supermicro unveils MegaDC servers - The first commercial off-the-shelf systems designed exclusively for hyperscale data centres ...

Mellanox delivers Spectrum-3 based Ethernet switches - First 12,8 Tbps networking platforms optimized for Cloud, storage, and AI ...

Semtech announces production of Tri-Edge, a PAM4 CDR platform for 200G and 400G data centre applications ...

Innovium delivers production grade SONiC/SAI for TERALYNX based switch systems ...

Innovium and Credo announce interoperability of production TERALYNX 7 switch family with Credo's Dual 400G MACsec solution ...

Kingston Technology releases enterprise-grade data centre NVMe SSD for mixed use ...

MaxLinear's 2nd generation PAM4 DSP selected by Centera Photonics to deliver sub-3,5W 100G optical modules for hyperscale data centres ...

Applications

UK supercomputer to combat Africa's worst locust outbreak in decades ...

Formula for possible treatment of coronavirus developed by innovative Bulgarian company ...

CSC has selected Mahti supercomputer Pilot Projects ...

HETDEX experiment, led by UT Austin, uses advanced computing resources at TACC to pin down the expansion rate of the universe ...

Oden Institute's Feliciano Giustino applies TACC's supercomputing power to the development of novel materials at the quantum scale ...

Computer model solves mystery of how gas bubbles build big methane hydrate deposits ...

A flexible brain for AI ...

AI assist CT analysis in identifying COVID-19 patients ...

The Cloud

Centre-wide support for, and R&D around, containers helps researchers compute with ease at TACC and elsewhere ...

Oracle announces fiscal 2020 third quarter financial results ...

Hydro66 and maincubes sign partnership for European coverage ...

Computer model solves mystery of how gas bubbles build big methane hydrate deposits


Methane bubbles form as a field sample of gas hydrate is allowed to depressurize. To develop his model, researchers worked on samples of sediments rich in natural gas hydrates taken from the Gulf of Mexico during a UT led research mission in 2017. Credit: Dylan Meyer/ The University of Texas at Austin.
12 Mar 2020 Austin - New research from the University of Texas at Austin has explained an important mystery about natural gas hydrate formations and, in doing so, advanced scientists' understanding of how gas hydrates could contribute to climate change and energy security.

The research used a computer model of gas bubbles flowing through hydrate deposits, a common phenomenon which according to existing models, should not be possible based on physics. The new model helps explain how some deposits grow into massive natural gas hydrate reservoirs, such as those found beneath the Gulf of Mexico.

A paper describing the research was published February 16, 2020, in the journalGeophysical Research Letters.

Gas hydrates are an icy substance in which gas molecules, typically methane, become trapped in water-ice cages under high pressure and low temperature. They are found widely in nature, house a substantial fraction of the world's organic carbon and could become a future energy resource. However, many questions remain about how hydrate deposits form and evolve.

One such question was raised by observations in the field which spotted methane flowing freely as a gas through hydrate deposits in the subsurface. What puzzled scientists is that under conditions where hydrates occur, methane should only exist as a hydrate, not as a free gas. To solve the mystery of the free flowing gas, a team of UT researchers led by Dylan Meyer, a graduate student at the UT Jackson School of Geosciences, recreated in the lab what they saw in the field.

Using this data, they hypothesized that as hydrate forms in a deposit it also acts as a barrier between gas and water, restricting the speed at which new hydrate forms, and allowing much of the gas to bubble through the deposit. They developed this idea into a computer model and found that the model matched experimental results. When scaled up, they also matched evidence from field studies, making it the first model of the phenomena to successfully do both. Crucially, the model suggests that gas flowing through the subsurface can accumulate into large, concentrated hydrate reservoirs, which could be suitable targets for future energy sources.

"The model convincingly reproduces a range of independent experimental results, which strongly support the fundamental concepts behind it", stated Dylan Meyer. "We believe this model will be an essential tool for future studies investigating the evolution of large, highly concentrated hydrate reservoirs that experience relatively rapid gas flow through porous media."

The study is the first time this kind of model has been built using data from experiments designed to mimic the gas flow process. The team produced their own hydrate deposit in the lab using a mixture of sand, water and gas and recreating the extreme conditions found in nature. Their efforts provided them with realistic and relevant data from which to develop their model.

Co-author Peter Flemings, a professor at the Jackson School, said that understanding how methane gas travels through hydrate layers in the subsurface is important for understanding methane's role in the carbon cycle and its potential contribution to global warming.

"The paper gives an elegant and simple model to explain some very challenging experiments", stated Peter Flemings.

The study's experiments were conducted in specialized labs at the Jackson School, but the model was the result of a cross-campus collaboration between two UT schools, the Jackson School and the Cockrell School of Engineering.

Dylan Meyer, Peter Flemings and Kehua You, a research scientist at the University of Texas Institute for Geophysics (UTIG), had developed the original computer code to explain their experimental results, but it wasn't until they teamed up with David DiCarlo, an associate professor at the the UT Cockrell School of Engineering, who showed them how the results could be presented using analytical math, that they could successfully tackle the problem in a way that mirrored what they were seeing in nature.

The paper is the culmination of Dylan Meyer's graduate research and builds on two previously published papers that focused on the results of his lab experiments. Dylan Meyer graduated in 2018 with a doctoral degree from the Jackson School and is now a postdoctoral researcher at Academia Sinica in Taipei.

The research was funded by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and is part of a broader partnership between the DOE and The University of Texas at Austin to investigate methane hydrate deposits in the Gulf of Mexico.

Many of the lab experiments that fed into the current study were performed by Dylan Meyer at the UT Pressure Core Center, a laboratory at the Jackson School equipped to store and study pressurized cores taken from natural methane hydrate deposits in 2017 and which remains the only such university-based facility.

Source: University of Texas at Austin

Back to Table of contents

Primeur weekly 2020-03-16

Focus

EuroHPC work programme 2020 calls for consolidation type of projects with a budget of 170 million euro ...

Details of the three upcoming 2020 EuroHPC JU Calls for Proposals ...

EuroHPC JU will move to the Drosbach building in Luxembourg ...

Exascale supercomputing

MEEP Project: A flexible system supporting next generation European open source software and hardware ...

Ying-Chih Yang joins SiPearl as CTO ...

Quantum computing

Preparing Ireland for quantum - Irish Centre for High-End Computing brings prestigious European Quantum Technologies Conference to Dublin ...

Finnish researchers look at noisy quantum computer ...

NSF CAREER Award supports framework for photons as quantum transistors ...

Engineers crack 58-year-old puzzle on way to quantum breakthrough ...

New error correction method provides key step toward quantum computing ...

IDC survey finds optimism that quantum computing will result in competitive advantage ...

Focus on Europe

New HLRS "Hawk" supercomputer to deliver unparalleled performance, capacity, and density for science and research ...

It is time to register for the Supercomputing Frontiers 2020 virtual conference ...

Middleware

SDSC announces comprehensive data sharing resource ...

Hardware

Supermicro unveils MegaDC servers - The first commercial off-the-shelf systems designed exclusively for hyperscale data centres ...

Mellanox delivers Spectrum-3 based Ethernet switches - First 12,8 Tbps networking platforms optimized for Cloud, storage, and AI ...

Semtech announces production of Tri-Edge, a PAM4 CDR platform for 200G and 400G data centre applications ...

Innovium delivers production grade SONiC/SAI for TERALYNX based switch systems ...

Innovium and Credo announce interoperability of production TERALYNX 7 switch family with Credo's Dual 400G MACsec solution ...

Kingston Technology releases enterprise-grade data centre NVMe SSD for mixed use ...

MaxLinear's 2nd generation PAM4 DSP selected by Centera Photonics to deliver sub-3,5W 100G optical modules for hyperscale data centres ...

Applications

UK supercomputer to combat Africa's worst locust outbreak in decades ...

Formula for possible treatment of coronavirus developed by innovative Bulgarian company ...

CSC has selected Mahti supercomputer Pilot Projects ...

HETDEX experiment, led by UT Austin, uses advanced computing resources at TACC to pin down the expansion rate of the universe ...

Oden Institute's Feliciano Giustino applies TACC's supercomputing power to the development of novel materials at the quantum scale ...

Computer model solves mystery of how gas bubbles build big methane hydrate deposits ...

A flexible brain for AI ...

AI assist CT analysis in identifying COVID-19 patients ...

The Cloud

Centre-wide support for, and R&D around, containers helps researchers compute with ease at TACC and elsewhere ...

Oracle announces fiscal 2020 third quarter financial results ...

Hydro66 and maincubes sign partnership for European coverage ...