Earth Institute Research Projects

Mechanisms for methane transport and hydrate accumulation in coarse-grained reservoirs

Lead PI: Dr. Alberto Malinverno

Unit Affiliation: Marine Geology & Geophysics, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO)

October 2013 - March 2018
; Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory (LDEO)
Project Type: Research

DESCRIPTION: The project goal is to evaluate whether the transport of methane, and the specific mechanism by which it is transported, are the primary controls on the development of persistent, massive hydrate accumulations in sediments below the seabed. The dissolved methane flux and time required to develop the accumulations observed at Walker Ridge Block 313 (WR313) in the northern Gulf of Mexico by long-distance updip migration or by short-distance local migration will be studied and defined within the scope of this research. Researchers will also determine whether there is enough methane in the dissolved phase in the fine-grained sediments to form the observed hydrate deposits or whether a gas phase is present and, if so, what the conditions are for three-phase equilibrium.


University of Texas at Austin


Department of Energy




Hugh Daigle, Ann E. Cook


University of Texas at Austin, Ohio State University


Nole, M., Daigle, H., Cook, A. E., and Malinverno, A., Short-range, overpressure-driven methane migration in coarse-grained gas hydrate reservoirs, Geophys. Res. Lett., 43, doi:10.1002/2016GL070096, 2016.

Nole, M., Daigle, H., Cook, A. E., Hillman, J. I. T., and Malinverno, A., Linking basin-scale and pore-scale gas hydrate distribution patterns in diffusion-dominated marine hydrate systems, Geochem. Geophys. Geosyst., 18, doi:10.1002/2016GC006662, 2017.

Hillman, J., Cook, A. E., Daigle, H., Nole, M., Malinverno, A., Meazell, K., and Flemings, P. B., Gas hydrate reservoirs and gas migration pathways in the Terrebonne Basin, Gulf of Mexico, Mar. Petr. Geol., 86, 1357-1373, doi:10.1016/j.marpetgeo.2017.07.029, 2017.

Malinverno, A., Cook, A. E., Daigle, H., and Oryan, B., Glacial cycles influence marine methane hydrate formation, Geophys. Res. Lett., 45, doi:10.1002/2017GL075848, 2018.


methanogenesis marine sediments migration hydrate accumulation methane transport dissolved methane flux