© ICDP, the International Continental Scientific Drilling Program, 1996-2020

www.icdp-online.org

Mallik 2002 Gas Hydrate Research Well Program

North America, Canada, Northwest Territorries, District of Mackenzie, Mackenzie River Delta, Mallik

new full-proposal: ICDP-2001/08
for the funding-period starting 2001-01-15
by Timothy S. Collett, Takashi Uchida, Jörn Lauterjung, Scott R. Dallimore
Abstract
International interest in science and engineering research on natural gas hydrates is at an all-time high. Natural gas hydrates represent an immense hydrocarbon resource underlying large portions of the world’s arctic continental areas and continental shelves. While these deposits ultimately may yield important sources of energy for the world, scientific and engineering research needs to be undertaken to make their production feasible. In addition to these very practical interests, there is mounting scientific evidence that natural gas hydrates have had a very significant role in enhancing the pace of global climate change through the release of methane, a greenhouse gas some 21 times more active than carbon dioxide. In the above context, the Principal Investigators have formed an international consortium that will establish a world research site for the study of continental natural gas hydrates in the Mackenzie Delta of the northwestern Canadian Arctic. This site, the Mallik gas hydrate field, was discovered through an exploration well drilled by Imperial Oil Ltd. in 1971-1972. In 1998, several of the host organizations of the proponents of this proposal collaborated to complete a 1150-m deep scientific research well at the site. The first terrestrial gas hydrate core samples in the world were collected and extensive scientific data were retained. The current proposal includes a 1200-m production research well and two nearby 1200-m science observation wells, all to be drilled in 2002. Full-scale field experiments will be conducted to monitor the physical behavior and kinetic response of gas hydrate deposits to depressurization and thermal/chemical stimulation. A wide-ranging science and engineering research program is proposed, with extensive geophysics research, core studies and long term monitoring of in-situ conditions. The scientific and engineering research objectives for the production research well focus on the assessment of (1) the geologic, geophysical, geochemical and geomechanical properties of gas hydrates, (2) the kinetic response of gas hydrates to temperature, pressure and chemical forcing (production testing), and (3) the stability of continental gas hydrates to climate change. The main part of this report outlines the management and operational plans developed to drill the 2002 well cluster. A simplified budget to accomplish the plan is outlined. Finally, the development of this joint research venture and the present status of partners in the well and science programs are described. Several appendices provide further details of the project. Appendix A gives the Curriculum Vitae and bibliographies of the principal Investigators. Appendix B describes details of the science research activities planned for the wells and the scientists involved. The present proposal, revised from a submission in December 2000, has been augmented substantially based upon recommendations stemming from an ICDP workshop on the 2002 Mallik Gas Hydrate Research Well Program held July 17 and 18, 2001 in Aylmer, Quebec, Canada. Approximately 40 scientists from Canada, USA, Germany, Japan, China and India attended the workshop, presenting 20 new research proposals. These proposals have been incorporated within the 2002 Mallik Gas Hydrate Research Program. A commitment of US$1,300,000 (Cdn$2,000,000) from ICDP is requested to ensure that the science observation wells and the full scientific program can proceed.
Scientific Objectives
Keywords
Climate change, Deep biosphere, Gas hydrates, Global environment, ICDP-2001/08, MALLIK, MALLIX0, MALLIX1, Natural resources
Location
North America, Canada, Northwest Territorries, District of Mackenzie, Mackenzie River Delta, Mallik: 69.4606, -134.6615

© ICDP, the International Continental Scientific Drilling Program, 1996-2020

www.icdp-online.org