Wayne State part of study on energy extraction

Sep 2, 2012

DETROIT (AP) - A Detroit university is playing a role in early but promising efforts to find and extract new energy sources.

A research project at Wayne State University is among 14 across 11 states involved in work on methane hydrates. These are structures that look like ice but have natural gas locked inside.

The project builds on what the U.S. government calls a "successful, unprecedented" test on Alaska's North Slope that produced a steady flow of gas from methane hydrates.

The Energy Department says the hydrates are found onshore, including in the Arctic permafrost, and offshore in ocean sediments along most continental shelves worldwide. It sees the structures as an untapped resource holding great potential for economic and energy security.

Wayne State is getting $178,000 from the department for its two-year project.