Fundamental Principles and Applications of Natural Gas Hydrates

Nature. 2003 Nov 20;426(6964):353-63. doi: 10.1038/nature02135.


Natural gas hydrates are solid, non-stoichiometric compounds of small gas molecules and water. They form when the constituents come into contact at low temperature and high pressure. The physical properties of these compounds, most notably that they are non-flowing crystalline solids that are denser than typical fluid hydrocarbons and that the gas molecules they contain are effectively compressed, give rise to numerous applications in the broad areas of energy and climate effects. In particular, they have an important bearing on flow assurance and safety issues in oil and gas pipelines, they offer a largely unexploited means of energy recovery and transportation, and they could play a significant role in past and future climate change.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Evolution, Chemical
  • Fossil Fuels / supply & distribution*
  • Greenhouse Effect
  • Molecular Structure
  • Transportation
  • Water / chemistry*


  • Fossil Fuels
  • Water