Burning Question: What's Cold as Ice and Flames?
Scientists from Japan and Canada have discovered how to release gas from ice located deep below the permafrost of the Mackenize Delta. Ice that burns when a match ignites the released gas. The photo to the right of the process is from the Geological Survey of Canada.
The most concentrated deposit of frozen gas hydrate is located in Mallik, near the Beaufort Sea. Methane is the gas that is captured in the frozen ice
It will be a long time before any of us can say that our homes are heated by fiery ice. Much more research, including the environmental impact of extracting the gas must be conducted.
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Frozen Gas Hydrate lit by a Match
Quark's 2011 voyage to the Beaufort Sea is Arctic Passage, Khlebnikov's final tranist of the Northwest Passage.
The Science of Fiery Ice
Tremendous pressure under permafrost and ocean beds traps gas in water molecule crystals. When removed from the subterranean pockets, the ice melts, releasing methane gas that ignites when it encounters a flame.