Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Juvenile Shale Gas in Sweden - Tectonics and deep biosphere

04.05.2015

Interplay of tectonics and the deep biosphere

Considering geological time scales, the occurrence of biogenic shale gas in Sweden´s crust is relatively young. An international team of geoscientists (led by Hans-Martin Schulz, German Research Centre for Geosciences GFZ) found that biogenic methane in the Alum Shale in South Sweden formed due to deglaciation around 12.000 years ago.


Fig. 1: Calcit crystals in the Alum Shale as indicators of methane formation (Photo: GFZ)


Fig. 2: Pores of nano-metre size in the Alum Shale filled by methane gas (Photo: GFZ)

Moreover, the formation processes were due to complex interactions between neotectonic activity and the occurrence of a deep biosphere. Applying a new hydrogeochemical modelling approach, the specific methane generation process was unravelled and quantified for the first time in Europe.

Around 300 million years ago the Variscan Mountain belt was formed in Central Europe. Its orogeny and uplift was coupled to extensional movements in today´s Northern Europe.

As a result, mafic magmas intruded the early Palaeozoic rock sequence and led to oil formation in the Alum Shale followed by its expulsion. Migrating bitumens impregnated the Alum Shale outside the area of thermal influence.

The melting of the up to three kilometers thick glaciers at the end of the last glaciation led to a beginning uplift of the formerly glaciated Baltic Sea region which still today rises by up to 10 mm per year. A consequence of this uplift tendency is the formation of fractures along which melting water migrated into the subsurface.

It is important to note that low contents of dissolved solids in formation water is a prerequisite for methanogenic microbes to convert soluble oil components into methane. Accordingly, methane is stored in black shale today and can be found up to approximately 100 meters depth.

Up to now, similar biogenic methane resources were exclusively known from North America which was glaciated as Northern Europe. The most prominent example is the Antrim Shale of Devonian age in Michigan.

Hans-Martin Schulz, Steffen Biermann, Wolfgang van Berk, Martin Krüger, Nontje Straaten, Achim Bechtel, Richard Wirth, Volker Lüders, Niels Hemmingsen Schovsbo, and Stephen Crabtree: „From shale oil to biogenic shale gas: Retracing organic–inorganic interactions in the Alum Shale (Furongian–Lower Ordovician) in southern Sweden.”, AAPG Bulletin, v. 99, no. 5 (May 2015), pp. 927–956, DOI: 10.1306/10221414014

Franz Ossing | Helmholtz-Zentrum Potsdam - Deutsches GeoForschungsZentrum GFZ
Further information:
http://www.gfz-potsdam.de/

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht Laser precision: NASA flights, satellite align over sea ice
04.10.2019 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

nachricht A fortress of ice and snow
04.10.2019 | Alfred-Wegener-Institut, Helmholtz-Zentrum für Polar- und Meeresforschung

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Controlling superconducting regions within an exotic metal

Superconductivity has fascinated scientists for many years since it offers the potential to revolutionize current technologies. Materials only become superconductors - meaning that electrons can travel in them with no resistance - at very low temperatures. These days, this unique zero resistance superconductivity is commonly found in a number of technologies, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Future technologies, however, will harness the total synchrony of electronic behavior in superconductors - a property called the phase. There is currently a...

Im Focus: How Do the Strongest Magnets in the Universe Form?

How do some neutron stars become the strongest magnets in the Universe? A German-British team of astrophysicists has found a possible answer to the question of how these so-called magnetars form. Researchers from Heidelberg, Garching, and Oxford used large computer simulations to demonstrate how the merger of two stars creates strong magnetic fields. If such stars explode in supernovae, magnetars could result.

How Do the Strongest Magnets in the Universe Form?

Im Focus: Liquifying a rocky exoplanet

A hot, molten Earth would be around 5% larger than its solid counterpart. This is the result of a study led by researchers at the University of Bern. The difference between molten and solid rocky planets is important for the search of Earth-like worlds beyond our Solar System and the understanding of Earth itself.

Rocky exoplanets that are around Earth-size are comparatively small, which makes them incredibly difficult to detect and characterise using telescopes. What...

Im Focus: Axion particle spotted in solid-state crystal

Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids in Dresden, Princeton University, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences have spotted a famously elusive particle: The axion – first predicted 42 years ago as an elementary particle in extensions of the standard model of particle physics.

The team found signatures of axion particles composed of Weyl-type electrons (Weyl fermions) in the correlated Weyl semimetal (TaSe₄)₂I. At room temperature,...

Im Focus: A cosmic pretzel

Twin baby stars grow amongst a twisting network of gas and dust

The two baby stars were found in the [BHB2007] 11 system - the youngest member of a small stellar cluster in the Barnard 59 dark nebula, which is part of the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

International Symposium on Functional Materials for Electrolysis, Fuel Cells and Metal-Air Batteries

02.10.2019 | Event News

NEXUS 2020: Relationships Between Architecture and Mathematics

02.10.2019 | Event News

Optical Technologies: International Symposium „Future Optics“ in Hannover

19.09.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Electrochemistry to benefit photonics: Nanotubes can control laser pulses

11.10.2019 | Physics and Astronomy

Biologically inspired skin improves robots' sensory abilities (Video)

11.10.2019 | Power and Electrical Engineering

New electrolyte stops rapid performance decline of next-generation lithium battery

11.10.2019 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>