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Formation temperatures of thermogenic and biogenic methane

Science

By:
, , , , , , , , , , ,
DOI: 10.1126/science.1254509

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Abstract

Methane is an important greenhouse gas and energy resource generated dominantly by methanogens at low temperatures and through the breakdown of organic molecules at high temperatures. However, methane-formation temperatures in nature are often poorly constrained. We measured formation temperatures of thermogenic and biogenic methane using a “clumped isotope” technique. Thermogenic gases yield formation temperatures between 157° and 221°C, within the nominal gas window, and biogenic gases yield formation temperatures consistent with their comparatively lower-temperature formational environments (<50°C). In systems where gases have migrated and other proxies for gas-generation temperature yield ambiguous results, methane clumped-isotope temperatures distinguish among and allow for independent tests of possible gas-formation models.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Formation temperatures of thermogenic and biogenic methane
Series title:
Science
DOI:
10.1126/science.1254509
Volume
344
Issue:
6191
Year Published:
2014
Language:
English
Publisher:
American Association for the Advancement of Science
Contributing office(s):
Central Energy Resources Science Center
Description:
4 p.
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Science
First page:
1500
Last page:
1503
Number of Pages:
4