Fluorescence of oil is commonly used for oil spill detection, but this involves numerous calibrations by highly trained technical staff to make accurate measurements. Hydrocarbons released into the ocean are a mixture of both volatile (i.e. methane, ethane), and non-volatile (large C-H molecules). Methane as a component of hydrocarbons and as the principle component of natural gas make it the ideal gas to measure in order to determine:
- Pipeline leaks
- Well blow-out spills
- Dispersion of hydrocarbons due to ocean currents
- Bacterial decay of hydrocarbon substances after release, and
- Estimates of leak/spill volumes with knowledge of the Methane to Oil ratio
Compact in size the Mini CH4 is suited for down-well operations either as a self-contained battery-powered unit, or connected to power at the surface. Depths of 1000 m or more and temperatures of 0 to 40 °C are easily achieved with the Mini CH4.