April 2011

Electromagnetic Characterization of Gas Hydrates

James Lindsay, University of Louisiana at Lafayette

Abstract Summary

Subsea gas hydrates are a potential energy resource, drilling hazard, and are linked to slope instability and global climate change. The electromagnetic anomalies of gas hydrates have been detected using marine Controlled Source Electromagnetic surveying. Seismic surveying has moderate success detecting the lower bounds of hydrate bearing sediments. Due to the resistive nature of gas hydrates, electromagnetic surveying has successfully detected and delineating depth and thickness of the hydrate bearing sediments, proving to be more successful then seismic methods. A database of parameters from hydrate bearing sediments (depth, thickness, host resistivity and hydrate resistivity) from various drilling expeditions has been created. Collected data has been used to generate one dimensional models to be used to compute to electric field. Computation of the electric field has been completed with a HED source, and returns the electric fields magnitude and phase at specified survey receiver locations. This research has compared variations in the electric fields for hydrate bearing sediments and barren host sediments. Inputs of hydrate depth, thickness, resistivity and survey frequency have been varied parametrically through the range of data created in the database. The typical response has been studied, as well as variations between global locations. Attributes of each response have also been qualitatively and quantitatively described.

Biographical Sketch

James Lindsay was born in Madison, Wisconsin and quickly found himself living in the Toronto (Canada) area. James completed his undergraduate degree at McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada in Earth and Environmental Science where besides geosciences, he had a focus in mathematics. His family may dispute that his degree was actually in rugby, as he was a player for the University team, as well as within the Canadian Super League. After his bachelors, James had a brief stint as a mountain bike bum and shortly found himself in the swamp pursuing his masters at the University of Louisiana. After arriving here James found himself working for two local companies, and was the team leader for this years Imperial Barrel Award team (which recently took third place). James has completed his coursework and plans on graduating soon, however his advisor may see differently. Besides slaving on his thesis, James is active in judo, the local rugby community, and attempting to understand the game of golf. James is pursuing a career in the oil and gas industry, and hopes his career can take him abroad.