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Raman Studies of Methane−Ethane Hydrate Metastability

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journal contribution
posted on 05.03.2009, 00:00 by Hiroshi Ohno, Timothy A. Strobel, Steven F. Dec, E. Dendy Sloan, Jr., Carolyn A. Koh
The interconversion of methane−ethane hydrate from metastable to stable structures was studied using Raman spectroscopy. sI and sII hydrates were synthesized from methane−ethane gas mixtures of 65% or 93% methane in ethane and water, both with and without the kinetic hydrate inhibitor, poly(N-vinylcaprolactam). The observed faster structural conversion rate in the higher methane concentration atmosphere can be explained in terms of the differences in driving force (difference in chemical potential of water in sI and sII hydrates) and kinetics (mass transfer of gas and water rearrangement). The kinetic hydrate inhibitor increased the conversion rate at 65% methane in ethane (sI is thermodynamically stable) but retards the rate at 93% methane in ethane (sII is thermodynamically stable), implying there is a complex interaction between the polymer, water, and hydrate guests at crystal surfaces.