Cockrell School of Engineering
The University of Texas at Austin


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Graduate Seminar - Dr. Peter Flemings


Monday, September 18, 2017


03:00pm - 04:00pm


CPE 2.204


Speaker:  Dr. Peter Flemings, professor and holder of the John A. and Katherine G. Jackson Chair in Energy and Mineral Resources at The University of Texas at Austin

Title of Seminar: “Illuminating the genesis of methane hydrate within coarse-grained reservoirs through deepwater drilling in the Gulf of Mexico”                                                                                        


In May 2017, the UT-GOM2-1 Hydrate Pressure Coring Expedition drilled two wells in 6700’ of water depth to 1500 feet beneath the seafloor to core hydrate-bearing channel-levee turbidite deposits in Green Canyon Block 955 in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. We imaged and logged 13 pressure cores and analyzed subsamples for hydrate concentration, pore water composition, and grain size. The hydrate-bearing interval is composed of interbedded clayey-silts and silty-sands. The silty-sands contain trough cross bedding and have 70% hydrate saturation while the clayey-silts have a 20-30% hydrate saturation.  We returned 21 meter-long pressure cores to the University of Texas for storage, distribution, and analysis. These cores form the foundation of a multi-year international experimental program to illuminate flow properties (permeability and relative permeability) and mechanical properties (compressibility) to inform models to understand how to produce this potential resource safely, environmentally, and economically. 


Dr. Peter B. Flemings is a professor and holder of the John A. and Katherine G. Jackson Chair in Energy and Mineral Resources, University of Texas, Austin.  Prior to joining U.T., Peter held positions at Penn State, MIT, and Columbia University. Peter has focused on how basinal flow drives a range of geological processes from landslides to submarine venting.

Peter works closely with academic and industry colleagues to shed new insight into problems of overpressure and basinal fluid flow. He is the lead investigator for a DOE-supported effort to drill for methane hydrates in the Gulf of Mexico. He has developed multi-phase flow models to describe the genesis of these deposits. Many of his graduate students now play important roles in the analysis of pore pressure and stress in both academics and industry.

Peter has consulted internationally and he served as an advisor.