Scientists at the University of Liverpool are working with leading oil companies to further understanding of the nature of oil and gas reservoirs within deeply buried submarine channels.
Professor Stephen Flint and Dr David Hodgson, from the Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences, have been awarded £1 million by a global consortium of 11 of the world’s leading oil companies to study how sand is transported through and deposited in deep-sea submarine channels. Scientists will study ancient channel systems in the Karoo area of South Africa, which are now exposed above sea level.
Submarine channels transport sediments such as sand, mud and silt from shallow marine waters to the deep sea and contain much of the recently discovered oil and gas reserves outside the Middle East. The cost of drilling a well to extract new reserves in slope channel reservoirs can cost over $50 million (£29 million) and so it is crucial that exactly the right position is targeted. Only sand filled channels can produce oil and so scientists at the University will work on predicting which channels contain sand and which are filled with mud and silt, based on analysis on the characteristics and setting of the Karoo systems.
Samantha Martin | alfa
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Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.
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Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.
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Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.
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