(WXYZ) - Wayne State University is playing a role in early efforts to find and extract new energy sources.
The research project is one of 14 from 11 states involved in work on methane hydrates. Methane hydrates are
structures that look like ice, but have natural gas locked inside.
WSU is getting $178,000 from the U.S. Energy Department to work on the two-year project. It's expected to build on what the government calls a "successful, unprecedented" test on Alaska's North Slope that produced a steady flow of gas from methane hydrates.
Hydrates are found onshore, including in the Arctic permafrost, and offshore in ocean sediments along most continental shelves worldwide. They see the structures as an untapped resource holding great potential for economic and energy security.
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