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a-huge-helium-discovery-has-been-made
a-huge-helium-discovery-has-been-made

A huge helium discovery has been made

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A new approach to gas exploration has exposed a huge helium gas field, which could address the increasingly critical shortage of this vital yet rare element.

According to research presented by Durham University PhD student Diveena Danabalan at the Goldschmidt geochemistry conference in Yokohama, Japan, the natural store of helium found in the Rift valley in Tanzania contains an estimated 54bn cubic feet of the noble gas, alleviating fears of a global shortage.

A research team from Durham and Oxford universities, working with Helium One, a Norway-headquartered helium exploration company, uncovered the huge resource after applying expertise gleaned from oil and gas exploration to understand how helium is produced in rocks under the ground and where it accumulates.

“This is a significant find,” said Jon Gluyas, professor of geo-energy at Durham University and a member of the discovery team. “There are reserves of helium gas, but they have been depleting quite quickly. The price has gone up 500% in 15 years.”

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