methane hydrate

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Related to Methane clathrate: Methane hydrate, Gas hydrate

methane hydrate

[′mēth‚ān ′hī‚drāt]
(chemistry)
Methane gas trapped or dissolved in ice formed in deep-sea sediments.
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Huge amounts of methane clathrate are stored under the icy permafrost layer beneath the Arctic Ocean floor.
Left out on a tabletop, methane clathrate dissociates into its constituents, leaving nothing but a puddle of water.
To Durham and USGS geophysicists Laura Stern and Stephen Kirby, the peculiar ice was primarily a curious sideshow to the main aim of their research - perfecting a way of producing something called methane clathrate.
Massive quantities of methane are locked away in permafrost and in the ocean floors as methane clathrate - an ice-like material which can return to gas if temperatures increase or pressures drop.
Methane, a potent greenhouse gas, is starting to be released as the frozen tundra thaws, as well as methane clathrates that have long been locked in the sediments of continental shelves.