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Pressure coring, logging and subsampling with the HYACINTH system

By
P. J. Schultheiss
P. J. Schultheiss
1
Geotek Ltd
,
3 Faraday Close, Drayton Fields, Daventry NN11 8RD, UK
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T. J. G. Francis
T. J. G. Francis
1
Geotek Ltd
,
3 Faraday Close, Drayton Fields, Daventry NN11 8RD, UK
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M. Holland
M. Holland
2
Department of Geological Sciences, Arizona State University
,
Tempe, Arizona, USA
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J. A. Roberts
J. A. Roberts
1
Geotek Ltd
,
3 Faraday Close, Drayton Fields, Daventry NN11 8RD, UK
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H. Amann
H. Amann
3
Technische Universität Berlin
,
Maritime Technik, Berlin, Germany
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Thjunjoto
Thjunjoto
3
Technische Universität Berlin
,
Maritime Technik, Berlin, Germany
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R. J. Parkes
R. J. Parkes
4
School of Earth, Ocean and Planetary Sciences, University of Cardiff
,
UK
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D. Martin
D. Martin
4
School of Earth, Ocean and Planetary Sciences, University of Cardiff
,
UK
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M. Rothfuss
M. Rothfuss
5
Technische Universität Clausthal, Institut fur Erdölund Erdgastechnik
,
Germany
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F. Tyunder
F. Tyunder
6
Fugro Engineers B.V.
,
Leidschendam, The Netherlands
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P. D. Jackson
P. D. Jackson
7
British Geological
,
Survey, Keyworth, Nottingham, UK
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Published:
January 01, 2006

Abstract

The HYACINTH suite of equipment has been developed to investigate the pressure sensitive behaviour of sedimentary formations up to 250 bar (25 MPa). It does this by collecting pressure-preserved samples from boreholes that can be retrieved, subsampled and analysed in controlled conditions in the laboratory. This paper reviews the development of the system, how it originated from the need to better understand the nature and distribution of gas hydrates beneath the sea bed, and its achievements to date. While gas hydrates continue to be the major scientific and commercial impetus for using, and further developing, this pressure-sampling technology, other important scientific driving forces, including the growing interest in the deep biosphere beneath the sea floor, are playing an important role. We review the downhole tools, the transfer system and the suite of different pressure chambers that are required to make a complete working system. Non-destructive logging of cores contained in pressure chambers, using existing gammaand X-ray techniques, is discussed, as are future logging techniques that will have sensors embedded within the pressure chambers. Subsamples can now be taken at full pressure and transferred into specialized chambers where intrusive measurements and experiments can be performed (e.g. inoculation chambers for microbiology). The versatile philosophy behind the integrated systems will enable future developments to be made by third parties who want to obtain subsamples at in situ pressure from the HYACINTH system. We conclude by reviewing some of the highlights of the HYACINTH operations on ODP Leg 204 where the downhole tools retrieved cores containing gas hydrates (up to 40% by volume) that were subsequently logged on board in the laboratory. These data have already contributed to the scientific understanding of the nature and distribution of gas hydrates beneath the seabed in one area on the Oregon Margin off the USA.

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Contents

Geological Society, London, Special Publications

New Techniques in Sediment Core Analysis

R. G. Rothwell
R. G. Rothwell
National Oceanography Centre, UK
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Geological Society of London
Volume
267
ISBN electronic:
9781862395152
Publication date:
January 01, 2006

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