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Encyclopedia > Methane
Methane
Other names Marsh gas, firedamp
Identifiers
CAS number [74-82-8]
SMILES C
InChI 1/CH4/h1H4
Properties
Molecular formula CH4
Molar mass 16.0425 g/mol
Appearance Colorless gas
Density 0.717 kg/m3, gas
Melting point

-182.5 °C, 91 K, -297 °F Image File history File links Methane-2D-stereo. ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1088x1100, 178 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Methane ... Image File history File links Methane-3D-space-filling. ... Firedamp is a flammable gas found in coal mines. ... CAS registry numbers are unique numerical identifiers for chemical compounds, polymers, biological sequences, mixtures and alloys. ... The simplified molecular input line entry specification or SMILES is a specification for unambiguously describing the structure of chemical molecules using short ASCII strings. ... The IUPAC International Chemical Identifier (InChI), developed by IUPAC and NIST, is a digital equivalent of the IUPAC name for any particular covalent compound. ... A chemical formula is a concise way of expressing information about the atoms that constitute a particular chemical compound. ... Molar mass is the mass of one mole of a chemical element or chemical compound. ... For other uses, see Density (disambiguation). ... The melting point of a crystalline solid is the temperature range at which it changes state from solid to liquid. ...

Boiling point

-161.6 °C, 112 K, -259 °F Italic text This article is about the boiling point of liquids. ...

Solubility in water 3.5 mg/100 mL (17 °C)
Hazards
MSDS External MSDS
Main hazards Highly flammable (F+)
NFPA 704
4
1
0
 
R-phrases R12
S-phrases (S2), S9, S16, S33
Flash point -188 °C
Related compounds
Related Alkanes Ethane, propane
Related compounds Methanol, chloromethane, formic acid, formaldehyde, silane
Supplementary data page
Structure and
properties
n, εr, etc.
Thermodynamic
data
Phase behaviour
Solid, liquid, gas
Spectral data UV, IR, NMR, MS
Except where noted otherwise, data are given for
materials in their standard state
(at 25 °C, 100 kPa)

Infobox disclaimer and references

Methane is a chemical compound with the molecular formula CH4. It is the simplest alkane, and the principal component of natural gas. Methane's bond angles are 109.5 degrees. Burning one molecule of methane in the presence of oxygen releases one molecule of CO2 (carbon dioxide) and two molecules of H2O: Solubility is a chemical property referring to the ability for a given substance, the solute, to dissolve in a solvent. ... Impact from a water drop causes an upward rebound jet surrounded by circular capillary waves. ... An example MSDS in a US format provides guidance for handling a hazardous substance and information on its composition and properties. ... This page provides supplementary chemical data on methane. ... The examples and perspective in this article or section may not represent a worldwide view. ... NFPA 704 is a standard maintained by the U.S. National Fire Protection Association. ... Image File history File links NFPA_704. ... R-phrases are defined in Annex III of European Union Directive 67/548/EEC: Nature of special risks attributed to dangerous substances and preparations. ... S-phrases are defined in Annex IV of European Union Directive 67/548/EEC: Safety advice concerning dangerous substances and preparations. ... For other uses, see Flash point (disambiguation). ... Chemical structure of methane, the simplest alkane Alkanes, also known as Paraffins, are chemical compounds that consist only of the elements carbon (C) and hydrogen (H) (i. ... This article is about a chemical compound. ... Propane is a three-carbon alkane, normally a gas, but compressible to a liquid that is transportable. ... Methanol, also known as methyl alcohol, carbinol, wood alcohol, wood naphtha or wood spirits, is a chemical compound with chemical formula CH3OH (often abbreviated MeOH). ... R-phrases , , S-phrases , , Flash point -46 °C Autoignition temperature 625 °C Except where noted otherwise, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 Â°C, 100 kPa) Infobox disclaimer and references Chloromethane, also called Methyl chloride, or simply R-40 or HCC 40, is a chemical compound... Formic acid (systematically called methanoic acid) is the simplest carboxylic acid. ... R-phrases , , , S-phrases , , , , , Flash point -53 °C Related Compounds Related aldehydes acetaldehyde benzaldehyde Related compounds ketones carboxylic acids Except where noted otherwise, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 Â°C, 100 kPa) Infobox disclaimer and references Formaldehyde (methanal) is the chemical compound with the formula... Silane is a chemical compound with chemical formula SiH4. ... This page provides supplementary chemical data on methane. ... This page provides supplementary chemical data on methane. ... The refractive index (or index of refraction) of a medium is a measure for how much the speed of light (or other waves such as sound waves) is reduced inside the medium. ... The relative dielectric constant of a material under given conditions is a measure of the extent to which it concentrates electrostatic lines of flux. ... This page provides supplementary chemical data on methane. ... This page provides supplementary chemical data on methane. ... Ultraviolet-Visible Spectroscopy or Ultraviolet-Visible Spectrophotometry (UV/ VIS) involves the spectroscopy of photons (spectrophotometry). ... Infrared spectroscopy (IR spectroscopy) is the subset of spectroscopy that deals with the infrared region of the electromagnetic spectrum. ... Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy most commonly known as NMR spectroscopy is the name given to the technique which exploits the magnetic properties of certain nuclei. ... Mass spectrometry (previously called mass spectroscopy (deprecated) or informally, mass-spec and MS) is an analytical technique that measures the mass-to-charge ratio of ions. ... The plimsoll symbol as used in shipping In chemistry, the standard state of a material is its state at 1 bar (100 kilopascals exactly). ... Look up chemical compound in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Chemical structure of methane, the simplest alkane Alkanes, also known as Paraffins, are chemical compounds that consist only of the elements carbon (C) and hydrogen (H) (i. ... For other uses, see Natural gas (disambiguation). ... This article is about the chemical reaction combustion. ... 3D (left and center) and 2D (right) representations of the terpenoid molecule atisane. ... This article is about the chemical element and its most stable form, or dioxygen. ... Carbon dioxide is a chemical compound composed of two oxygen atoms covalently bonded to a single carbon atom. ... Impact from a water drop causes an upward rebound jet surrounded by circular capillary waves. ...

CH4 + 2O2 → CO2 + 2H2O

Methane's relative abundance and clean burning process makes it a very attractive fuel. However, because it is a gas (at normal temperature and pressure; see STP), methane is difficult to transport from its source. In its natural gas form, it is generally transported in bulk by pipe or LNG carriers; few countries still transport it by truck. One of these countries is the USA. For other uses, see Fuel (disambiguation). ... Temperature and air pressure can vary from one place to another on the Earth, and can also vary in the same place with time. ... For other uses, see Natural gas (disambiguation). ... An elevated section of the Alaska Pipeline. ... An LNG carrier is a ship designed for transporting liquefied natural gas. ... Motto: (traditional) In God We Trust (official, 1956–present) Anthem: The Star-Spangled Banner Capital Washington, D.C. Largest city New York City Official language(s) None at the federal level; English de facto Government Federal Republic  - President George W. Bush (R)  - Vice President Dick Cheney (R) Independence - Declared - Recognized...


Methane is a relatively potent greenhouse gas with a high global warming potential of 72 (averaged over 20 years) or 25 (averaged over 100 years) [1]. Methane in the atmosphere is eventually oxidized, producing carbon dioxide and water. As a result, methane in the atmosphere has a half life of seven years (every seven years, the amount of methane halves). Top: Increasing atmospheric CO2 levels as measured in the atmosphere and ice cores. ... Global warming potential (GWP) is a measure of how much a given mass of greenhouse gas is estimated to contribute to global warming. ... This article is about the computer game. ...


The abundance of methane in the Earth's atmosphere in 1998 was 1745 parts per billion, up from 700 ppb in 1750. In the same time period, CO2 increased from 278 to 365 parts per million. The radiative forcing effect due to this increase in methane abundance is about one-third of that of the CO2 increase[1]. In addition, there is a large, but unknown, amount of methane in methane clathrates in the ocean floors. Global warming could release this methane, which could cause a further sharp rise in global temperatures. Such releases of methane may have been a major factor in previous major extinction events. The Earth's crust also contains huge amounts of methane. Large amounts of methane are produced anaerobically by methanogenesis. Other sources include mud volcanoes which are connected with deep geological faults. The generalised concept of radiative forcing in climate science is any change in the radiation (heat) entering the climate system or changes in radiatively active gases. ... Burning ice. Methane, released by heating, burns; water drips (USGS). ... An extinction event (also known as: mass extinction; extinction-level event, ELE) occurs when there is a sharp decrease in the number of species in a relatively short period of time. ... In geology, a crust is the outer layer of a planet, part of its lithosphere. ... Look up Anaerobic in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Methanogenesis is the formation of methane by microbes. ... A gaseous mud volcano The term mud volcano or mud dome is used to refer to formations created by geologically excreted liquids and gases, although there are several different processes which may cause such activity. ...

Contents

Properties

Methane is the major component of natural gas, about 97% by volume. At room temperature and standard pressure, methane is a colorless, odorless gas; the smell characteristic of natural gas is an artificial safety measure caused by the addition of an odorant, often methanethiol or ethanethiol. Methane has a boiling point of −161 °C at a pressure of one atmosphere. As a gas it is flammable only over a narrow range of concentrations (5–15%) in air. Liquid methane does not burn unless subjected to high pressure (normally 4–5 atmospheres.) For other uses, see Natural gas (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Room temperature (disambiguation). ... Temperature and air pressure can vary from one place to another on the Earth, and can also vary in the same place with time. ... An Odorant is an substance that can be smelled. ... Methanethiol (also known as methyl mercaptan) is a colorless gas with a smell like rotten cabbage. ... Ethanethiol, also known as ethyl mercaptan, is an organic compound used as an odorant in propane. ... For other uses, see Celsius (disambiguation). ... Standard atmosphere (symbol: atm) is a unit of pressure. ... Flammable or Flammability refers to the ease at which a substance will ignite, causing fire or combustion. ...


Potential health effects

Methane is not toxic; however, it is highly flammable and may form explosive mixtures with air. Methane is violently reactive with oxidizers, halogens, and some halogen-containing compounds. Methane is also an asphyxiant and may displace oxygen in an enclosed space. Asphyxia may result if the oxygen concentration is reduced to below 19.5% by displacement. The concentrations at which flammable or explosive mixtures form are much lower than the concentration at which asphyxiation risk is significant. When structures are built on or near landfills, methane off-gas can penetrate the buildings' interiors and expose occupants to significant levels of methane. Some buildings have specially engineered recovery systems below their basements to actively capture such fugitive off-gas and vent it away from the building. An example of this type of system is in the Dakin Building, Brisbane, California. This article is concerned solely with chemical explosives. ... An oxidizing agent is a substance that oxidizes another substance in electrochemistry or redox chemical reactions in general. ... This article is about the chemical series. ... An asphyxiant gas is a non-toxic or minimally toxic gas which dilutes or displaces the oxygen containing atmosphere, leading to death by asphyxiation if breathed long enough. ... This article is about the chemical element and its most stable form, or dioxygen. ... Suffocation redirects here, for the band, see Suffocation (band). ... Look up landfill in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Dakin Building The Dakin Building is an architectural award winning class A office building on the San Francisco Bay in Brisbane, California. ... Brisbane is a small city located in the northern part of San Mateo County, California. ...


Reactions of methane

Main reactions with methane are: combustion, steam reforming to syngas, and halogenation. In general, methane reactions are hard to control. Partial oxidation to methanol, for example, is difficult to achieve; the reaction typically progresses all the way to carbon dioxide and water. This article is about the chemical reaction combustion. ... Steam reforming, hydrogen reforming or catalytic oxidation, is a method of producing hydrogen from hydrocarbons. ... It has been suggested that Town gas be merged into this article or section. ... Halogenation is a chemical reaction that replaces a hydrogen atom with a halogen atom. ... Methanol, also known as methyl alcohol, carbinol, wood alcohol, wood naphtha or wood spirits, is a chemical compound with chemical formula CH3OH (often abbreviated MeOH). ... Carbon dioxide is a chemical compound composed of two oxygen atoms covalently bonded to a single carbon atom. ... Impact from a water drop causes an upward rebound jet surrounded by circular capillary waves. ...


Combustion

In the combustion of methane, several steps are involved: This article is about the chemical reaction combustion. ...


Methane is believed to form a formaldehyde (HCHO or H2CO). The formaldehyde gives a formyl radical (HCO), which then forms carbon monoxide (CO). The process is called oxidative pyrolysis: R-phrases , , , S-phrases , , , , , Flash point -53 °C Related Compounds Related aldehydes acetaldehyde benzaldehyde Related compounds ketones carboxylic acids Except where noted otherwise, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 Â°C, 100 kPa) Infobox disclaimer and references Formaldehyde (methanal) is the chemical compound with the formula... In chemistry, radicals (often referred to as free radicals) are atomic or molecular species with unpaired electrons on an otherwise open shell configuration. ... R-phrases , , , , S-phrases , , , , Flash point Flammable gas Related Compounds Related oxides carbon dioxide; carbon suboxide; dicarbon monoxide; carbon trioxide Supplementary data page Structure and properties n, εr, etc. ... Simple sketch of pyrolysis chemistry Pyrolysis usually means the chemical decomposition of organic materials by heating in the absence of oxygen or any other reagents, except possibly steam. ...

CH4 + O2 → CO + H2 + H2O

Following oxidative pyrolysis, the H2 oxidizes, forming H2O, replenishing the active species, and releasing heat. This occurs very quickly, usually in significantly less than a millisecond. For other uses, see Heat (disambiguation) In physics, heat, symbolized by Q, is energy transferred from one body or system to another due to a difference in temperature. ... One millisecond is one-thousandth of a second. ...

2H2 + O2 →2H2O

Finally, the CO oxidizes, forming CO2 and releasing more heat. This process is generally slower than the other chemical steps, and typically requires a few to several milliseconds to occur. To oxidize an element or a compound is to increase its oxidation number. ...

2CO + O2 →2CO2

Hydrogen activation

The strength of the carbon-hydrogen covalent bond in methane is among the strongest in all hydrocarbons, and thus its use as a chemical feedstock is limited. Despite the high activation barrier for breaking the C–H bond, CH4 is still the principal starting material for manufacture of hydrogen in steam reforming. The search for catalysts which can facilitate C–H bond activation in methane and other low alkanes is an area of research with considerable industrial significance. For other uses, see Carbon (disambiguation). ... This article is about the chemistry of hydrogen. ... Covalent redirects here. ... This article is about the chemistry of hydrogen. ... Steam reforming, hydrogen reforming or catalytic oxidation, is a method of producing hydrogen from hydrocarbons. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Catalysis. ... Chemical structure of methane, the simplest alkane Alkanes, also known as Paraffins, are chemical compounds that consist only of the elements carbon (C) and hydrogen (H) (i. ...


Reactions with halogens

Methane reacts with all halogens given appropriate conditions, as follows:

CH4 + X2 → CH3X + HX

where X is a halogen: fluorine (F), chlorine (Cl), bromine (Br), or iodine (I). This mechanism for this process is called free radical halogenation. This article is about the chemical series. ... Distinguished from fluorene and fluorone. ... General Name, symbol, number chlorine, Cl, 17 Chemical series halogens Group, period, block 17, 3, p Appearance yellowish green Standard atomic weight 35. ... Bromo redirects here. ... For other uses, see Iodine (disambiguation). ... This reaction is typical of alkanes and alkyl-substituted aromatics. ...


Uses

Fuel

For more on the use of methane as a fuel, see: natural gas

Methane is important for electrical generation by burning it as a fuel in a gas turbine or steam boiler. Compared to other hydrocarbon fuels, burning methane produces less carbon dioxide for each unit of heat released. Also, methane's heat of combustion is about 802 kJ/mol, which is lower than any other hydrocarbon, but if a ratio is made with the molecular mass (16.0 g/mol) divided by the heat of combustion (902 kJ/mol) it is found that methane, being the simplest hydrocarbon, actually produces the most heat per unit mass than other complex hydrocarbons. In many cities, methane is piped into homes for domestic heating and cooking purposes. In this context it is usually known as natural gas, and is considered to have an energy content of 39 megajoules per cubic meter, or 1,000 BTU per standard cubic foot. For other uses, see Natural gas (disambiguation). ... Itaipu Dam is a hydroelectric generating station Electricity generation is the first process in the delivery of electricity to consumers. ... This machine has a single-stage centrifugal compressor and turbine, a recuperator, and foil bearings. ... A boiler is a closed vessel in which water or other fluid is heated. ... Carbon dioxide is a chemical compound composed of two oxygen atoms covalently bonded to a single carbon atom. ... HVAC may also stand for High-voltage alternating current HVAC is an initialism that stands for heating, ventilation and air-conditioning. This is sometimes referred to as climate control. ... For other uses, see Natural gas (disambiguation). ... A megajoule (abbreviation: MJ) is a unit of energy equal to 1000000 joules. ... The British thermal unit (BTU) is a non-metric unit of energy, used in the United States and, to a certain extent, the UK. The SI unit is the joule (J), which is used by most other countries. ... A standard cubic foot is a measure of quantity of gas, equal to a cubic foot of volume at 60 degrees Fahrenheit and either 14. ...


Methane in the form of compressed natural gas is used as a fuel for vehicles, and is claimed to be more environmentally friendly than alternatives such as gasoline/petrol and diesel. Research is being conducted by NASA on methane's potential as a rocket fuel. One advantage of methane is that it is abundant in many parts of the solar system and it could potentially be harvested in situ, providing fuel for a return journey. [2] Typical North America vehicles carry this diamond shape symbol, meaning it is running on compressed natural gas fuel. ... For other uses, see NASA (disambiguation). ... Rocket fuel is a propellant that reacts with an oxidizing agent to produce thrust in a rocket. ...


Industrial uses

Methane is used in industrial chemical processes and may be transported as a refrigerated liquid (liquefied natural gas, or LNG). While leaks from a refrigerated liquid container are initially heavier than air due to the increased density of the cold gas, the gas at ambient temperature is lighter than air. Gas pipelines distribute large amounts of natural gas, of which methane is the principal component. Liquefied natural gas or LNG is natural gas that has been cooled until it becomes liquid, and it is stored in tanks. ... An elevated section of the Alaska Pipeline. ... For other uses, see Natural gas (disambiguation). ...


In the chemical industry, methane is the feedstock of choice for the production of hydrogen, methanol, acetic acid, and acetic anhydride. When used to produce any of these chemicals, methane is first converted to synthesis gas, a mixture of carbon monoxide and hydrogen, by steam reforming. In this process, methane and steam react on a nickel catalyst at high temperatures (700–1100 °C). This article is about the chemistry of hydrogen. ... Methanol, also known as methyl alcohol, carbinol, wood alcohol, wood naphtha or wood spirits, is a chemical compound with chemical formula CH3OH (often abbreviated MeOH). ... R-phrases , S-phrases , , , Flash point 43 °C Related Compounds Related carboxylic; acids Formic acid; Propionic acid; Butyric acid Related compounds acetamide; ethyl acetate; acetyl chloride; acetic anhydride; acetonitrile; acetaldehyde; ethanol; thioacetic acid; acetylcholine; acetylcholinesterase Supplementary data page Structure and properties n, εr, etc. ... Acetic anhydride, also known as ethanoic anhydride, is one of the simplest of acid anhydrides. ... Syngas (from synthesis gas) is the name given to gasses of varying composition that are generated in coal gasification and some types of waste-to-energy facilities. ... R-phrases , , , , S-phrases , , , , Flash point Flammable gas Related Compounds Related oxides carbon dioxide; carbon suboxide; dicarbon monoxide; carbon trioxide Supplementary data page Structure and properties n, εr, etc. ... This article is about the chemistry of hydrogen. ... Steam reforming, hydrogen reforming or catalytic oxidation, is a method of producing hydrogen from hydrocarbons. ... For other uses, see Steam (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Nickel (disambiguation). ...

CH4 + H2O → CO + 3H2

The ratio of carbon monoxide to hydrogen in synthesis gas can then be adjusted via the water gas shift reaction to the appropriate value for the intended purpose. The water gas shift reaction is an organic reaction in which water and carbon monoxide react to form carbon dioxide and hydrogen (water splitting) CO + H2O → CO2 + H2 The water gas shift reaction is part of steam reforming of hydrocarbons and is involved in the chemistry of catalytic converters While...

CO + H2O → CO2 + H2

Less significant methane-derived chemicals include acetylene, prepared by passing methane through an electric arc, and the chloromethanes (chloromethane, dichloromethane, chloroform, and carbon tetrachloride), produced by reacting methane with chlorine gas. However, the use of these chemicals is declining, acetylene as it is replaced by less costly substitutes, and the chloromethanes due to health and environmental concerns. Acetylene (systematic name: ethyne) is a hydrocarbon belonging to the group of alkynes. ... A 3000 volt electricity arc between two nails Electricity arcs between the power rail and electrical pickup shoe on a London Underground train An electric arc can melt calcium oxide An electric arc is an electrical breakdown of a gas which produces an ongoing plasma discharge, resulting from a current... R-phrases , , S-phrases , , Flash point -46 °C Autoignition temperature 625 °C Except where noted otherwise, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 Â°C, 100 kPa) Infobox disclaimer and references Chloromethane, also called Methyl chloride, or simply R-40 or HCC 40, is a chemical compound... R-phrases S-phrases , , Flash point None Supplementary data page Structure and properties n, εr, etc. ... R-phrases , , , S-phrases , Flash point Non-flammable U.S. Permissible exposure limit (PEL) 50 ppm (240 mg/m3) (OSHA) Supplementary data page Structure and properties n, εr, etc. ... R-phrases , , , , S-phrases , , , , , Flash point Non flammable Supplementary data page Structure and properties n, εr, etc. ... General Name, symbol, number chlorine, Cl, 17 Chemical series halogens Group, period, block 17, 3, p Appearance yellowish green Standard atomic weight 35. ...


Sources of methane

Natural gas fields

The major source of methane is extraction from geological deposits known as natural gas fields. It is associated with other hydrocarbon fuels and sometimes accompanied by helium and nitrogen. The gas at shallow levels (low pressure) is formed by anaerobic decay of organic matter and reworked methane from deep under the Earth's surface. In general, sediments buried deeper and at higher temperatures than those which give oil generate natural gas. Methane is also produced in considerable quantities from the decaying organic wastes of solid waste landfills. Wikipedia does not yet have an article with this exact name. ... Look up Hydrocarbon in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... General Name, symbol, number helium, He, 2 Chemical series noble gases Group, period, block 18, 1, s Appearance colorless Standard atomic weight 4. ... General Name, symbol, number nitrogen, N, 7 Chemical series nonmetals Group, period, block 15, 2, p Appearance colorless gas Standard atomic weight 14. ... Aerobic and anaerobic bacteria can be identified by growning them in liquid culture: 1: Obligate aerobic bacteria gather at the top of the test tube in order to absorb maximal amount of oxygen. ... Look up decay in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Petro redirects here. ... Mixed municipal waste, Hiriya, Tel Aviv Municipal solid waste (MSW) is a waste type that includes predominantly household waste (domestic waste) with sometimes the addition of commercial wastes collected by a municipality within a given area. ... Look up landfill in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


Alternative sources

Apart from gas fields an alternative method of obtaining methane is via biogas generated by the fermentation of organic matter including manure, wastewater sludge, municipal solid waste (including landfills), or any other biodegradable feedstock, under anaerobic conditions. Methane hydrates/clathrates (icelike combinations of methane and water on the sea floor, found in vast quantities) are a potential future source of methane. Cattle belch methane accounts for 16% of the world's annual methane emissions to the atmosphere. [2] The livestock sector in general (primarily cattle, chickens, and pigs) produces 37% of all human-induced methane".[3] However animals "that put their energies into making gas are less efficient at producing milk and meat". Early research has found a number of medical treatments and dietary adjustments that help limit the production of methane in ruminants.[4] [5] [6] Biogas-bus in Bern, Switzerland Biogas typically refers to a (biofuel) gas produced by the anaerobic digestion or fermentation of organic matter including manure, sewage sludge, municipal solid waste, biodegradable waste or any other biodegradable feedstock, under anaerobic conditions. ... For other uses, see Fermentation. ... Animal manure is often a mixture of animals feces and bedding straw, as in this example from a stable. ... A ruminant is any hooved animal that digests its food in two steps, first by eating the raw material and regurgitating a semi-digested form known as cud, then eating the cud. ...


Industrially, methane can be created from common atmospheric gases and hydrogen (produced, perhaps, by electrolysis) through chemical reactions such as the Sabatier process, Fischer-Tropsch process. Coal bed methane extraction is a method for extracting methane from a coal deposit. In chemistry and manufacturing, electrolysis is a method of separating chemically bonded elements and compounds by passing an electric current through them. ... The Sabatier process involves the reaction of hydrogen with carbon dioxide at elevated temperatures and pressures in the presence of a nickel catalyst to produce methane and water. ... // The Fischer-Tropsch process is a catalyzed chemical reaction in which carbon monoxide and hydrogen are converted into liquid hydrocarbons of various forms. ... Coal bed methane extraction is a method for extracting methane from a coal deposit. ... Coal Example chemical structure of coal Coal (pronounced ) is a fossil fuel formed in swamp ecosystems where plant remains were saved by water and mud from oxidization and biodegradation. ...


A recent scientific experiment has also yielded results pointing to one species of plant[7] producing trace methane.[8].


Methane in Earth's atmosphere

Methane concentrations graph
Computer models showing the amount of methane (parts per million by volume) at the surface (top) and in the stratosphere (bottom).
Computer models showing the amount of methane (parts per million by volume) at the surface (top) and in the stratosphere (bottom).

Early in the Earth's history—about 3.5 billion years ago—there was 1,000 times as much methane in the atmosphere as there is now. The earliest methane was released into the atmosphere by volcanic activity. During this time, Earth's earliest life appeared. These first, ancient bacteria added to the methane concentration by converting hydrogen and carbon dioxide into methane and water. Oxygen did not become a major part of the atmosphere until photosynthetic organisms evolved later in Earth's history. With no oxygen, methane stayed in the atmosphere longer and at higher concentrations than it does today. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (950x775, 676 KB) Author: Ed Dlugokencky, NOAA CMDL. http://www. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (950x775, 676 KB) Author: Ed Dlugokencky, NOAA CMDL. http://www. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (540x633, 365 KB) Summary Licensing File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Methane ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (540x633, 365 KB) Summary Licensing File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Methane ...


In present times, due to the increase in oxygen, the amount of methane has decreased. The average mole concentration of methane at the Earth's surface in 1998 was 1,745 ppb.[9] Its concentration is higher in the northern hemisphere as most sources (both natural and human) are larger. The concentrations vary seasonally with a minimum in the late summer mainly due to removal by the hydroxyl radical. Parts per billion (ppb) is a measure of concentration that is used where low levels of concentration are significant. ... Hydroxide is a functional group consisting of oxygen and hydrogen: -O−H It has a charge of 1-. The term hydroxyl group is used when the functional group -OH is counted as a substituent of an organic compound. ...


Methane is created near the surface, and it is carried into the stratosphere by rising air in the tropics. Uncontrolled build-up of methane in Earth's atmosphere is naturally checked—although human influence can upset this natural regulation—by methane's reaction with hydroxyl radicals formed from singlet oxygen atoms and with water vapor. Atmosphere diagram showing stratosphere. ... A noontime scene from the Philippines on a day when the Sun is almost directly overhead. ... Hydroxide is a functional group consisting of oxygen and hydrogen: -O−H It has a charge of 1-. The term hydroxyl group is used when the functional group -OH is counted as a substituent of an organic compound. ... Molecular orbital diagram for singlet oxygen. ...


Methane as a greenhouse gas

Methane in the Earth's atmosphere is an important greenhouse gas with a global warming potential of 25 over a 100-year period. This means that a methane emission will have 25 times the impact on temperature of a carbon dioxide emission of the same mass over the following 100 years. Methane has a large effect for a brief period (about 10 years), whereas carbon dioxide has a small effect for a long period (over 100 years). Because of this difference in effect and time period, the global warming potential of methane over a 20 year time period is 72. The Earth's methane concentration has increased by about 150% since 1750, and it accounts for 20% of the total radiative forcing from all of the long-lived and globally mixed greenhouse gases.[10] The generalised concept of radiative forcing in climate science is any change in the radiation (heat) entering the climate system or changes in radiatively active gases. ...


Emissions of methane

Houweling et al. (1999) give the following values for methane emissions (Tg/a=teragrams per year):[9]

Global average methane concentrations from measurement (NOAA)
Global average methane concentrations from measurement (NOAA)
Origin CH4 Emission
Mass (Tg/a) Type (%/a) Total (%/a)
Natural Emissions
Wetlands (incl. Rice agriculture) 225 83 37
Termites 20 7 3
Ocean 15 6 3
Hydrates 10 4 2
Natural Total 270 100 45
Anthropogenic Emissions
Energy 110 33 18
Landfills 40 12 7
Ruminants (Livestock) 115 35 19
Waste treatment 25 8 4
Biomass burning 40 12 7
Anthropogenic Total 330 100 55
Sinks
Soils -30 -5 -5
Tropospheric OH -510 -88 -85
Stratospheric loss -40 -7 -7
Sink Total -580 -100 -97
Emissions + Sinks
Imbalance (trend) +20 ~2.78 Tg/ppb +7.19 ppb/a

Slightly over half of the total emission is due to human activity.[10] Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (700x855, 166 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Methane Metadata This file contains additional information, probably added from the digital camera or scanner used to create... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (700x855, 166 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Methane Metadata This file contains additional information, probably added from the digital camera or scanner used to create... Annum is a Latin noun meaning year. ... A subtropical wetland in Florida, USA, with an endangered American Crocodile. ... Families Mastotermitidae Kalotermitidae Termopsidae Hodotermitidae Rhinotermitidae Serritermitidae Termitidae Termites, sometimes known as white ants, are a group of social insects usually classified at the taxonomic rank of order Isoptera. ... Animated map exhibiting the worlds oceanic waters. ... Hydrate is a term which means different things in inorganic chemistry and organic chemistry. ... Look up anthropogenic in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Look up landfill in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Ruminantia. ... Loess field in Germany Surface-water-gley developed in glacial till, Northern Ireland For the American hard rock band, see SOiL. For the System of a Down song, see Soil (song). ... Atmosphere diagram showing the mesosphere and other layers. ... // Hydroxyl group The term hydroxyl group is used to describe the functional group -OH when it is a substituent in an organic compound. ... Atmosphere diagram showing stratosphere. ...


Living plants (e.g. forests) have recently been identified as a potentially important source of methane. A 2006 paper calculated emissions of 62–236 Tg a-1, and "this newly identified source may have important implications".[11][12] However the authors stress "our findings are preliminary with regard to the methane emission strength".[13] These findings have been called into question in a 2007 paper which found "there is no evidence for substantial aerobic methane emission by terrestrial plants, maximally 0.3% of the previously published values".[14] Annum is a Latin noun meaning year. ...


Long term atmospheric measurements of methane by NOAA show that the build up of methane has slowed dramatically over the last decade, after nearly tripling since pre-industrial times [15]. It is thought that this reduction is due to reduced industrial emissions and drought in wetland areas. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is a scientific agency of the United States Department of Commerce focused on the conditions of the oceans and the atmosphere. ...


Removal processes

The major removal mechanism of methane from the atmosphere involves radical chemistry ; it reacts with the hydroxyl radical (·OH), initially formed from water vapor broken down by oxygen atoms that come from the cleavage of ozone by ultraviolet radiation: In chemistry, radicals (often referred to as free radicals) are atomic or molecular species with unpaired electrons on an otherwise open shell configuration. ... Hydroxide is a functional group consisting of oxygen and hydrogen: -O−H It has a charge of 1-. The term hydroxyl group is used when the functional group -OH is counted as a substituent of an organic compound. ... For other uses, see Ozone (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Ultraviolet (disambiguation). ...

CH4 + ·OH → ·CH3 + H2O

This reaction in the troposphere gives a methane lifetime of 9.6 years. Two more minor sinks are soil sinks (160 year lifetime) and stratospheric loss by reaction with ·OH, ·Cl and ·O1D in the stratosphere (120 year lifetime), giving a net lifetime of 8.4 years.[9] Oxidation of methane is the main source of water vapor in the upper stratosphere (beginning at pressure levels around 10 kPa). Atmosphere diagram showing the mesosphere and other layers. ...


Sudden release from methane clathrates

At high pressures, such as are found on the bottom of the ocean, methane forms a solid clathrate with water, known as methane hydrate. An unknown, but possibly very large quantity of methane is trapped in this form in ocean sediments. The sudden release of large volumes of methane from such sediments into the atmosphere has been suggested as a possible cause for rapid global warming events in the Earth's distant past, such as the Paleocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum of 55 million years ago. A clathrate or clathrate compound is a chemical substance consisting of a Greek klethra, meaning bars (in the sense of a lattice). ... Burning ice. Methane, released by heating, burns; water drips (USGS). ... Global warming refers to the increase in the average temperature of the Earths near-surface air and oceans in recent decades and its projected continuation. ... Climate change during the last 65 million years. ...


One source estimates the size of the methane hydrate deposits of the oceans at ten trillion tons (10 exagrams)[citation needed]. Theories suggest that should global warming cause them to heat up sufficiently, all of this methane could again be suddenly released into the atmosphere. Since methane is twenty-three times stronger (for a given weight, averaged over 100 years) than CO2 as a greenhouse gas; this would immensely magnify the greenhouse effect, heating Earth to unprecedented levels (see Clathrate gun hypothesis). The clathrate gun hypothesis states that as sea temperatures rise the sudden release of methane from methane clathrate compounds buried in the seabeds will cause a drastic alteration of the ocean enviornment and the atmosphere of earth, as recent analysis concerning the Permian extinction event indicates may have happened in...


Release of methane from bogs

Although less dramatic than release from clathrates, but already happening, is an increase in the release of methane from bogs as permafrost melts. Although records of permafrost are limited, recent years (1999 to 2007) have seen record thawing of permafrost in Alaska and Siberia. While these two men dig in Alaska to study soil, the hard permafrost requires the use of a jackhammer In geology, permafrost or permafrost soil is soil at or below the freezing point of water (0 °C or 32 °F) for two or more years. ... For other uses, see Alaska (disambiguation). ... This article is about Siberia as a whole. ...


Recent measurements in Siberia show that the methane released is five times greater than previously estimated [16].


Extraterrestrial methane

Methane has been detected or is believed to exist in several locations of the solar system. It is believed to have been created by abiotic processes, with the possible exception of Mars. This article is about the Solar System. ... An electron microscope reveals bacteria-like structures in meteorite fragment ALH84001 For other uses of Life on Mars, see Life on Mars (disambiguation). ...

Traces of methane gas are present in the thin atmosphere of the Earth's Moon.[17] Adjectives: Martian Atmosphere Surface pressure: 0. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure 70 kPa Hydrogen ~86% Helium ~14% Methane 0. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure 140 kPa Hydrogen >93% Helium >5% Methane 0. ... Iapetus (eye-ap-É™-tÉ™s, IPA , Greek Ιαπετός) is the third-largest moon of Saturn, discovered by Giovanni Domenico Cassini in 1671. ... Titan (, from Ancient Greek Τῑτάν) or Saturn VI is the largest moon of Saturn and the only moon known to have a dense atmosphere. ... Atmosphere Surface pressure: trace, significant spatial variability[8][9] Composition: 91% Water vapour 4% Nitrogen 3. ... Atmospheric characteristics Atmospheric pressure 120 kPa Hydrogen 83% Helium 15% Methane 1. ... Atmospheric pressure 0 kPa Ariel (air-ee-É™l, IPA ) is a moon of Uranus discovered on 24 October 1851 by William Lassell. ... Miranda (IPA: ) is the smallest and innermost of Uranus five major moons. ... Atmospheric pressure 0 kPa Oberon (oe-bur-on) is the outermost of the major moons of the planet Uranus. ... Atmospheric pressure   Titania (ti-taan-ee-É™ or tye-tan-ee-É™) is the largest moon of Uranus. ... Atmospheric pressure 0 kPa Umbriel (um-bree-É™l, IPA ) is a moon of Uranus discovered on 1851-10-24 by William Lassell. ... Atmospheric characteristics Surface pressure ≫100 MPa Hydrogen - H2 80% ±3. ... Triton (trye-tÉ™n, IPA: , Greek Τρίτων), or Neptune I, is the planet Neptunes largest moon. ... For other uses, see Pluto (disambiguation). ... Charon (shair-É™n or kair-É™n (key), IPA , Greek Χάρων), discovered in 1978, is, depending on the definition employed, either the largest moon of Pluto or one member of a double dwarf planet with Pluto being the other member. ... Eris (IPA or ), officially designated 136199 Eris, is the largest known dwarf planet in the solar system. ... Comet Halley, officially designated 1P/Halley, more generally known as Halleys Comet after Edmond Halley, is a comet that can be seen every 75-76 years. ... Comet Hyakutake (Japanese: 百武彗星 Hyakutake suisei, IPA ; formally designated C/1996 B2) is a comet that was discovered in January 1996, which passed very close to Earth in March of that year. ... This article is about Earths moon. ...


Methane has also been detected in interstellar clouds.[18] Interstellar cloud is the generic name given to an accumulation of gas, plasma and dust in our and other galaxies. ...

  • Methane is believed to be present on Charon, but it is not 100% confirmed.[19]

Methane has also been detected on the extrasolar planet HD 189733b. This is the first detection of an organic compound on planets outside the solar system. It is unknown how it originated, when the high temperature (700°C) favors the formation of carbon monoxide instead. [20] An extrasolar planet, or exoplanet, is a planet beyond the Solar System. ... HD 189733 (HD 189733 A) is a yellow dwarf star about 63 light-years away in the constellation Vulpecula, and host to at least one extrasolar planet. ... R-phrases , , , , S-phrases , , , , Flash point Flammable gas Related Compounds Related oxides carbon dioxide; carbon suboxide; dicarbon monoxide; carbon trioxide Supplementary data page Structure and properties n, εr, etc. ...


See also

Sustainable development Portal

Image File history File links Sustainable_development. ... Donbas economic activity The 2007 Zasyadko mine disaster (Ukrainian: ) was a mining accident that took place on November 18, 2007 in the eastern Ukrainian mine of Zasyadko in Donetsk Oblast (province). ... The theory of abiogenic petroleum origin holds that natural petroleum was formed from deep carbon deposits, perhaps dating to the formation of the Earth. ... Anaerobic digestion component of Lübeck mechanical biological treatment plant in Germany, 2007 Anaerobic digestion is a process in which microorganisms break down biodegradable material in the absence of oxygen. ... Anaerobic respiration refers to the oxidation of molecules in the absence of oxygen to produce energy, in opposition to Aerobic respiration which does use oxygen. ... Biogas-bus in Bern, Switzerland Biogas typically refers to a (biofuel) gas produced by the anaerobic digestion or fermentation of organic matter including manure, sewage sludge, municipal solid waste, biodegradable waste or any other biodegradable feedstock, under anaerobic conditions. ... Top: Increasing atmospheric CO2 levels as measured in the atmosphere and ice cores. ... Halomethane compounds are molecules of methane (CH4) with one or more of the hydrogen atoms replaced with halogen atoms. ... The following is a list of alkanes and their common names, sorted by number of carbon atoms. ... Burning ice. Methane, released by heating, burns; water drips (USGS). ... Methanogens are archaea that produce methane as a metabolic byproduct in anoxic conditions. ... Phyla Crenarchaeota Euryarchaeota Korarchaeota Nanoarchaeota ARMAN The Archaea (pronounced ) are a group of prokaryotic and single-celled microorganisms. ... Methanogenesis is the formation of methane by microbes. ... A microorganism or microbe is an organism that is so small that it is microscopic (invisible to the naked eye). ... Methanotrophs are bacteria that are able to grow using methane as their only source of carbon and energy. ... Phyla Actinobacteria Aquificae Chlamydiae Bacteroidetes/Chlorobi Chloroflexi Chrysiogenetes Cyanobacteria Deferribacteres Deinococcus-Thermus Dictyoglomi Fibrobacteres/Acidobacteria Firmicutes Fusobacteria Gemmatimonadetes Lentisphaerae Nitrospirae Planctomycetes Proteobacteria Spirochaetes Thermodesulfobacteria Thermomicrobia Thermotogae Verrucomicrobia Bacteria (singular: bacterium) are unicellular microorganisms. ... Methyl group In chemistry, a methyl group is a hydrophobic alkyl functional group derived from methane (CH4). ... A gas is one of the four main phases of matter (after solid and liquid, and followed by plasma), that subsequently appear as a solid material is subjected to increasingly higher temperatures. ... Thomas Gold (May 22, 1920 – June 22, 2004) was an Austrian astrophysicist, a professor of astronomy at Cornell University, and a member of the US National Academy of Sciences. ...

References

  1. ^ IPCC Fourth Assessment Report
  2. ^ Miller, G. Tyler. Sustaining the Earth: An Integrated Approach. U.S.A.: Thomson Advantage Books, 2007. 160.
  3. ^ Livestock’s Long Shadow–Environmental Issues and Options. Retrieved on 2007-01-04.
  4. ^ California Cows Fail Latest Emissions Test
  5. ^ New Zealand Tries to Cap Gaseous Sheep Burps
  6. ^ Research on use of bacteria from the stomach lining of kangaroos (who don't emit methane) to reduce methane in cattle
  7. ^ Plants do emit methane after all - earth - 02 December 2007 - New Scientist Environment
  8. ^ Methane emissions from terrestrial plants under aerobic conditions Nature, January 12, 2006
  9. ^ a b c Trace Gases: Current Observations, Trends, and Budgets. Climate Change 2001. United Nations Environment Programme.
  10. ^ a b Technical summary. Climate Change 2001. United Nations Environment Programme.
  11. ^ Methane emissions from terrestrial plants under aerobic conditions. Nature (2006-01-12). Retrieved on 2006-09-07.
  12. ^ Plants revealed as methane source. BBC (2006-01-11). Retrieved on 2006-09-07.
  13. ^ Global warming - the blame is not with the plants. eurekalert.org (2006-01-18). Retrieved on 2006-09-06.
  14. ^ Duek, Tom A.; Ries de Visser, Hendrik Poorter, Stefan Persijn, Antonie Gorissen, Willem de Visser, Ad Schapendonk, Jan Verhagen, Jan Snel, Frans J. M. Harren, Anthony K. Y. Ngai, Francel Verstappen, Harro Bouwmeester, Laurentius A. C. J. Voesenek, Adrie van der Werf (2007-03-30). "No evidence for substantial aerobic methane emission by terrestrial plants: a 13C-labelling approach.". New Phytologist. Blackwell. doi:10.1111/j.1469-8137.2007.02103.x. Retrieved on 2007-04-23. 
  15. ^ SCIENTISTS PINPOINT CAUSE OF SLOWING METHANE EMISSIONS. NOAA news Online. Retrieved on 2007-05-23.
  16. ^ Methane bubbles climate trouble. BBC (2006-09-07). Retrieved on 2006-09-07.
  17. ^ Stern, S.A. (1999). "The Lunar atmosphere: History, status, current problems, and context". Rev. Geophys. 37: 453–491. 
  18. ^ J. H. Lacy, J. S. Carr, N. J. Evans, II, F. Baas, J. M. Achtermann, J. F. Arens (1991). "Discovery of interstellar methane - Observations of gaseous and solid CH4 absorption toward young stars in molecular clouds". Astrophysical Journal 376: 556-560. 
  19. ^ B. Sicardy et al (2006). "Charon’s size and an upper limit on its atmosphere from a stellar occultation". Nature 439: 52. 
  20. ^ Stephen Battersby (2008-02-11). Organic molecules found on alien world for first time. Retrieved on 2008-02-12.

Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 4th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 12th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 250th day of the year (251st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 11th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 250th day of the year (251st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 18th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 249th day of the year (250th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 113th day of the year (114th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 143rd day of the year (144th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 250th day of the year (251st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 250th day of the year (251st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2008 (MMVIII) is the current year, a leap year that started on Tuesday of the Anno Domini (or common era), in accordance to the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 42nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2008 (MMVIII) is the current year, a leap year that started on Tuesday of the Anno Domini (or common era), in accordance to the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 43rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ...

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
Look up methane in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.
Image File history File links Commons-logo. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Wiktionary (a portmanteau of wiki and dictionary) is a multilingual, Web-based project to create a free content dictionary, available in over 151 languages. ... Chemical structure of methane, the simplest alkane Alkanes, also known as Paraffins, are chemical compounds that consist only of the elements carbon (C) and hydrogen (H) (i. ... This article is about a chemical compound. ... Propane is a three-carbon alkane, normally a gas, but compressible to a liquid that is transportable. ... Butane, also called n-butane, is the unbranched alkane with four carbon atoms, CH3CH2CH2CH3. ... Pentane (also known as amyl hydride or skellysolve) is an alkane hydrocarbon with the chemical formula CH3(CH2)3CH3. ... the 3rd ingredient in big mac ... R-phrases , , , , S-phrases , , , , , , , Flash point −4 °C Autoignition temperature 285 °C Explosive limits 1. ... For other uses, see Octane (disambiguation). ... Nonane is an alkane hydrocarbon with the chemical formula CH3(CH2)7CH3. ... Decane is an alkane hydrocarbon with the chemical formula CH3(CH2)8CH3. ... Undecane (also known as hendecane) is an alkane hydrocarbon with the chemical formula CH3(CH2)9CH3. ... Dodecane (also known as dihexyl, bihexyl, adakane 12 or duodecane) is an alkane hydrocarbon with the chemical formula CH3(CH2)10CH3, a thick, oily liquid of the paraffin series. ... The following is a list of alkanes and their common names, sorted by number of carbon atoms. ...

  Results from FactBites:
 
Chemical of the Week -- Methane (660 words)
Methane is not toxic when inhaled, but it can produce suffocation by reducing the concentration of oxygen inhaled.
Methane is synthesized commercially by the distillation of bituminous coal and by heating a mixture of carbon and hydrogen.
The reactions of methane with chlorine and fluorine are triggered by light.
Methane - definition of Methane in Encyclopedia (456 words)
CO The strength of the carbon-hydrogen covalent bond in methane is among the strongest in all hydrocarbons, and thus its use as a chemical feedstock is limited.
Pure methane is odorless, but when used as a fuel is usually mixed with small quantities of strongly-smelling sulfur compounds such as ethyl mercaptan to enable the detection of leaks.
Methane is a greenhouse gas with a global warming potential of 21 (meaning that it has 21 times the warming ability of carbon dioxide).
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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