Japan extracts 'fire ice' gas from seabed

  • AFP, Tokyo
  • |
  • Updated: Mar 12, 2013 23:37 IST

Japan said Tuesday it had successfully extracted methane hydrate, known as “fire ice”, from its seabed, possibly unlocking many years’ worth of gas for the resource-starved country.

In what they are claiming as a world first, a consortium is drilling for the hydrate, a fossil fuel that looks like ice but consists of very densely-packed methane surrounded by water molecules, one kilometre (3,300 feet) below sea level.

The solid white substance burns with a pale flame, leaving only water.

 

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