Press Esc to close



For full content view: Log in Now!

  • What's new in production

    Henry Terrell

    Methane hydrates are the cholesterol of the oil and gas industry. They tend to accumulate in tight places and form deposits, causing pipes and valves to clog up with catastrophic results, particularly in deepwater drilling and production. Most of the research into hydrates in the petroleum industry has focused on stopping them from forming in the first place. Under certain pressures and temperatures, 400–1,200 psi and 32–40°F, methane and water combine into crystalline solids, and the process is hard to stop. To recap the elementary part, under the previously described conditions, water forms geometric lattices that create pockets or cages into which light hydrocarbons and some light gas molecules can fit. There is a lot of natural gas in a given volume of hydrate. (For purposes of this article, “hydrate” is always methane hydrate, unless indicated otherwise.) One cubic foot of hydrate can contain 150–180 cf of methane. By comparison, a cubic foot of liquefied natural gas (LNG) equals about 600 cf of gas at atmospheric pressure.

This area of the site is restricted. In order to gain access, please either Log In, or subscribe to World Oil.

Two options are available to you for creating an account.

1. Get a Free Trial Subscription to World Oil Magazine and gain immediate access to select content on World Oil Online.

Start a Free Trial Subscription and gain immediate access to the complete current issue of World Oil Magazine. Plus, you’ll receive 3 upcoming issues of World Oil Magazine in print or digital format.* You also receive access to the Energy Events Calendar, Industry Statistics and WO Wire’s news and industry coverage.

Free Trial

2. Purchase a subscription to World Oil magazine and gain immediate and complete access to World Oil Online. As a Total Access subscriber you will have access to all areas of the site available to registered users and free subscribers as well as having access to such premium content areas as:

  • The Archives section containing over ten years of complete magazine archives,
  • The WO DataHub's engineering tables and directories,
  • The World Oil annual forecasts, including past predictions,
  • Select World Oil technical handbooks,
  • And much, much more!


Physical copies of this content may be available for purchase. Visit the Reprints & Back Issues section.

If you are already a paid subscriber and do not have access, please email



Engineering Data Tables

World Oil's specialized upstream Engineering Data Tables featuring the Drill Bit Classifier, Tubing Tables and more. Get Total Access today.


2013 Fracturing Technology

2013 Fracturing Technology


Upcoming Events