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Taiwan's ocean explorers uncover methane deposits
Publication Date : 14-03-2013
The seabed near Taiwan's Dongsha Islands potentially contain methane gas reserves, according to a survey conducted by the R/V Ocean Researcher 5, Taiwan's first 2,700-ton ocean exploring ship.
According to local reports, R/V Ocean Researcher 5's maiden voyage took place on February 18 from Anping Port in Tainan, and it returned to Kaohsiung Harbor on March 8.
Hsu Shu-kun, a professor of earth sciences at National Central University and the head of the ocean exploring mission, said that according to an analysis made from data collected using seismic reflection and sub-bottom profiling, there is methane gas trapped in the seabed of the island.
“However, part of the methane gas might have been released due to a massive undersea mountain collapse in that area, so further examination might be required to find out how much methane is left,” Hsu said.
Hsu said that the R/V Ocean Researcher 5 has the capability to control a unpiloted ocean exploring machine. He said he hoped that R/V Ocean Researcher 5 could lead Taiwan to compete in the field of international marine technology.