Gas hydrates are solid compounds that resemble snow or ice in appearance but are formed in the presence of water at high pressures and at temperatures above the ice point.
They are notorious for causing problems to producers and processors in the natural gas business, especially when dealing with sour gases which tend to form hydrates more readily than sweet gases. Therefore, the investigation of the phase behavior of sour natural gases at relatively high pressure involves a study of hydrates to determine their formation conditions and prevent the hydrate plugging problem. Hydrates are also involved in the removal of carbon dioxide from pre-combustion gases through fractional crystallization with gas hydrates. Moreover, with the discovery of reserves of natural gas hydrates on permafrost region and offshore, the interest for hydrates has also focused on how to benefit from them as a storage or transportation medium for methane or natural gas. Due to their importance, the GASP group is currently working on a thermodynamic model for providing a reliable prediction of hydrate phase equilibria.
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