Tokyo, Japan, March 02, 2013 --(PR.com
)-- Tundra Gas Inc is ready to begin trials of earthquake-resistant gas rigs in Qinghai Province, China.
“These rigs will have a four-legged production platform specifically designed to withstand earthquakes and temperatures as low as -40°C,” said Chairman and CEO Richard Steele. “The first test will begin in June 2013, and will involve horizontal drilling of up to three miles (4.8 km) into a promising site in Wuli, Qinghai Province.”
Mr. Steele explained the company utilizes horizontal drilling whenever practical because it extracts the methane gas underneath the ice and permafrost without disrupting the ice seal. An additional bonus is that extraction of gas in this manner will reduce the buoyancy pressure exerted on the overlying hydrate, so the seal integrity is better preserved as more underlying gases are produced.
Trials are expected to last 90 days, and Tundra Gas expects commercial drilling to begin by September 2014. The senior partner in the exploration and production, China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), is investing 23 billion yuan (3.37 billion dollars) in infrastructure in Qinghai to support gas production and storage in the province.
The investment is part of an ambitious program by CNPC to raise overall gas production in Qinghai from 1.5 billion cubic meters in 2010 to 15 billion cubic meters by 2015, with 10% of that total expected to be derived from methane hydrate deposits.