Welcome enthusiastic MOOCers

Hello MOOCers,
I’m Eric, one of your facilitators in ‘Exploring our Oceans’ MOOC. I’m a first year PhD student in the field of Marine Electromagnetic Geophysics at the National Oceanography Centre. My project aims to image and quantify methane hydrates pockmark chimneys which are located offshore Norway, by using the University of Southampton Controlled Source Electromagnetic (CSEM) method.

The University of Southampton CSEM System
The University of Southampton CSEM System

In recent years, methane hydrates deposits have attracted growing interest from both academic and industry research, due to their potential as an unconventional energy resource, role in climate change and concern as a geohazard. That is attributed to the fact the gas hydrates spread worldwide along continental margins, while their estimated amount is greater than all other hydrocarbon resources combined.

The hydrate molecule and a burning piece of hydrate
The hydrate molecule and a burning piece of hydrate
Worldwide methane hydrate distribution
Worldwide methane hydrate distribution
Methane hydrate sub-seafloor system
Methane hydrate sub-seafloor system
Methane bubbles escaping from the sea floor
Methane bubbles escaping from the sea floor

In my research I use forward and inverse models in order to delineate and quantify the amount of free gas and methane hydrates in the Nyegga CNEO3 chimney and its immediate surroundings, as well as studying the methane hydrates layers at depth over a larger regional scale.

Forward model of the electric field amplitude response at the pockmark chimney CNE03 - Taken from my research
Forward model of the electric field amplitude response at the pockmark chimney CNE03 – Taken from my research
2D inversion imaging of methane hydrate chimney
2D CSEM inversion imaging of the pockmark chimney CNE03 – Taken from my research

Future work will focus on the development of a joint seismic/electromagnetic tomography to better image methane hydrate pockmarks and understand the causes for hydrate dissociation from the seabed, to the water column and eventually to the atmoshpere.

 

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