Gas Geochemistry Laboratory

Unit number
7/ 6
Research fields
Department title
Geology and Geophysics

Gas Geochemistry Laboratory was founded in 1979 by Anatoly Obzhirov.

Currently, 25 researchers and engineers work in the laboratory including one professor and 13 PhDs. Anatoly Obzhirov was a scientific adviser of Candidates of Geology and Mineralogy. A single thesis paper was defended in 2016 under the guidance of Dr.Sc. R.B.Shakirov.

A large number of young scientists work in the laboratory; some of them are preparing their thesis papers.

The laboratory crew participates in international and Russian expeditions. In compliance with bilatteral agreements, the employees of institutes in Japan, South Korea, Vietnam and Chinaparticipate together with specialists of the Laboratory in international expeditions. The team also takes part in international and Russian conferences. Experienced staff give classes in the laboratory and give lectures at the FEFU.

Participation in federal programs

 • Federal Target Program “Comprehensive study of the processes, characteristics and resources of the Far Eastern Seas of Russia” of the subprogram “Study of the World Ocean Nature” of the Federal Target Program “The World Ocean” (state contract No. 43.634.11.0004 dated January 23, 2003).
 • Federal Target Program  02.515.11.5017.  The conditions for the formation and destruction of gashydrates in the Sea of ​​Okhotsk, their modeling and feasibility study for the methane extraction from gashydrates (2007-2008).
 • Federal Target Program no. 02.740.11.0022 “Investigation of the upper part of the lithosphere by a complex of geophysical and geochemical methods for assessment and forecast of the modern geological processes”.  POI - FESTU.  No. 02.740.11.0022/2 (2009-2011).
 • Federal Target Program “Scientific and Scientific-Pedagogical Personnel of Innovative Russia” for 2009-2013 (No. 16.740.11.0625).
 • Federal Target Program “Scientific and Scientific-Pedagogical Personnel of Innovative Russia” for 2009–2013, the theme of the project  “Unconventional Methane Resources of the Far East of Russia: Distribution, Genesis, Industrial Importance, Ecology ”, No. 2012-1.2.2-12-000-1007-005 (2012-2013).  Agreement  8319. 2012-2013.  CIT&S 01201281458 dated 12.12.2012.  Coordinator: R. Shakirov.

Participation in Russian and international projects
  • International Russian-German project COMEX (1998-2004)
  • International Russian-Japanese-Korean project CHAOS (2003-2006)
  • International project MULTISGAS, Baikal (2002-2004)
  • Genesis of methane fluxes and anomalous fields of hydrocarbon gases on Sakhalin Island and in Southern Primorye. Grant RFBR-Japanese Society for the Advancement of Science (JSPS). 05-05-66930YaFa (2005). Coordinator: D.Sc. A.I.Obzhirov
  • International project “Sakhalin Slope Gas Hydrate Project 2007 - 2012” within the framework of the agreement for the expedition in the Sea of ​​Okhotsk between POI (Russia), KIT (Japan) and KOPRI (Korea) 2007–2012, is prolonged for 2013-2017.
  • Joint Russian-Vietnamese Laboratory for Marine Sciences and Technologies (2010-2020 and beyond).
  • Russian-Chinese project “Using a complex of geological, geophysical, gas-geochemical, hydroacoustic and other means for oceanological research in marine conditions in order to search for hydrocarbon deposits, to study the conditions and symbiotic relationships of gas hydrates and deep-water gas and oil deposits, and to assess the possibility of determining promising areas of these deposits ". Institute of Oceanographic Instrumentation of the Shandong Academy of Sciences of the People’s Republic of China (2017-2018).
  • Joint Russian-Vietnamese Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology. POI FEB RAS - IMGG VANT. Founded in 2010. Coordinator of the Russian part: Dr. Sc. R.B.Shakirov.
Key research results

Background and reveal anomalous fields of methane and other gases are determined in the bottom water of the studied areas in the Seas and Oceans.
Petroleum potential predictions have been made in the Seas of East China, South China, Japan, Okhotsk and Bering by gas-geochemical criteria.
At one time, several areas with anomalous methane fields were discovered on the Vietnam shelf.  Subsequently, gas deposits were discovered at the Konshon structure.
In 1988 and 1989, the anomalous field of hydrocarbons in the Hynnam structure, promising for the reveal of an oil and gas reservoir, was found in Wonsan Bay (North Korea).
From 1984 to 1988 in the Sea of ​​Okhotsk, under a contract with the Dalmorneftegeofizika trust (Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk), gas-geochemical research were carried out with the aim of identifying priority objects for drilling oil and gas exploration wells on the Sakhalin shelf.  In six of the seven structures for which a positive outlook was given, industrial deposits of oil and gas were opened by drilling, and one was non-industrial.  On three structures out of three, for which a negative result was given, no hydrocarbon deposits were found by drilling.  At present, in many structures that have been evaluated positively by the gas-geochemical method (described in the monograph “Gas-geochemical fields of the Seas and Oceans and oil-and-gas potential forecast”, Nedra, 1993), oil and gas deposits were discovered by drilling.
Fifteen gashydrate areas were determined on the north-eastern Sakhalin slope in the Sea of ​​Okhotsk, anomalous methane fields were found in the Okinawa trough, and a forecast for the presence of gashydrates was made there.
The effects of methane fluxes and other gases on the environment have been recorded.  It was determined that the volume of methane flux from the Sea of ​​Okhotsk into the atmosphere is about 1 million tons per year.
Seismic-tectonic activity of the marginal Seas in the Western Part of the Pacific Ocean was discovered, which began in 1988 and continues to the present.  This activity was manifested in earthquakes and tsunamis (Kunashir (1994), Neftegorsk (1995), Hokkaido (2003), Nevel'sk (2007), Fukushima (2011) and others.
From March 1993 to June 1994 A.Obzhirov worked as an invited professor at the National Taiwan University.  He gave lectures on gasgeochemistry for students and participated in five marine expeditions in the Sea of East China, in the region of Okinawa trough and in the Sea of Philippine.  As a result of the expeditionary research, methane anomalies were discovered in the Okinawa trough area, which point the possible presence of gashydrates and oil and gas deposits there.
During the study of an important resource of unconventional gas - gashydrates, a global ring structure was identified for the first time: the Pacific Gas Hydrate Belt (TGB). The western and eastern margins of the Pacific Ocean are characterized by the proliferation of many gashydrate-bearing regions, which are combined in the provinces, as a rule, corresponding to the marginal seas and are represented by gashydrate-bearing West Pacific (East Asian) and East Pacific segments.  The initial resources of gashydrates in the West Pacific segment of the TGB are comparable to gas reserves in traditional deposits.
The initial resources of methane from coal basins and fields in the Far East of Russia have been estimated (11 trillion cubic meters), and the assessment of the coal methane resources of marine basins has begun.  These resources (on land) are comparable to the resources of conventional oil and gas fields, but are more accessible for development.  The environmental aspect of their use is to ensure the gas safety of populated areas: the environmental utilization of methane.  It is now freely carried into the atmosphere in quantities from 2 to 5 million tons per year from one well, along with such harmful components as radon, carbon dioxide and mercury. 

Essential publications

The list contains 17 publications in journals indexed in Web of Science and Scopus.

  1. Ershov V.V., Shakirov, R.B., Obzhirov, A.I.  Isotopic-geochemical characteristics of the free gases of the Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk mud volcano and their connection with regional seismicity.// Reports of the Academy of Sciences, 2011, vol. 440, No. 2. P. 256-261.
  2. Obzhirov A.I.  Expedition of POI FEB RAS to the Sea of ​​Okhotsk at the R/V “Akademik M.A. Lavrent'ev" (cruise No.50) from 5 to 28 June 2010.  // Pacific Geology. Vol. 30, No. 2, 2011. P. 123-126.
  3. Gresov A.I., Yatsuk A.V., Obzhirov A.I., Razvozzhaeva E.P., Kirillova G.L.  Gas-geochemical assessment of the prospects for the oil and gas potential of the Biofeld graben of the Middle Amur sedimentary basin (Far East of Russia) // Pacific geology.  Vol. 31, No. 2, 2012. P. 54-68.
  4. Obzhirov A.I.  International Scientific Expedition to the Sea of ​​Okhotsk at the R/V “Academician M.A.  Lavrent'ev ”( cruise No. 56) from August 9 to August 28, 2011 // Pacific Geology.  Vol. 31, No. 2, 2012. P.101.
  5. Obzhirov A.I., Pushchin I.K., Korovitskaya E.V.  Distribution of hydrogen and hydrocarbon gases in the Tonga island-arc system // Pacific Geology.  Vol. 31, No. 4, 2012. P. 87-93.
  6. Granin N.G., Mizandrontsev I.B., Obzhirov A.I., Vereshchagina O.F., Gnatovsky R.Yu., Zhdanov A.A.  Oxidation of methane in the water column in the Lake of Baikal // Reports of the Academy of Sciences, 2013, vol. 451, No. 3. P.  332-335.
  7. Obzhirov A.I.  The increase in the gas component in seismo-tectonic activvity and the participation of the gas in the occurrence of earthquakes // Pacific Geology. 2013. Vol. 32, No.  2. P.  86-89.
  8. Obzhirov A.I., Maltseva E.V., Gresov A.I., Kotlyarova O.S., Okulov A.K. Hydrocarbon potential of the Primorsky Krai // Mining Journal. No. 4. 2013. P. 9-13.
  9. Akulichev V.A., Obzhirov, A.I., Shakirov, R.B., Maltseva, E.V., Gresov, A.I., Telegin Yu.A., Conditions of gas hydrate formation in the Sea of ​​Okhotsk.  // Reports of the Academy of Sciences, "Oceanology". 2014. Vol.  454, No. 3, P. 340-342.
  10. Gresov, A.I., Obzhirov, A.I., and Yatsuk, A.V. Geostructural regularities of the permafrost distribution in the carbon-gas basins in the north-east of Russia // Earth's Cryosphere. 2014. V. XVIII, No. 1.  P. 3-11.
  11. Akulichev V.A., Shakirov R.B., Obzhirov A.I., Fung Van Fat, Nguyen Nu Chung, Duong Cuok Hyn, Maltseva E.V., Syrbu N.S., Polonik N.S.,  Le Duc Anh.  Anomalies of natural gases in the Gulf of Tonkin (South China Sea) // Reports of the Academy of Sciences.  2015. T.461.  № 1. С.53.
  12. Polonik N.S., Shakirov R.B., Sorochinskaya A.V., Obzhirov A.I.  Study of the composition of hydrocarbon components of the South-Sakhalin and Pugachevsky mud volcanoes.  // Reports of the Academy of Sciences.  2015. T.462.  № 1. P. 79.
  13. Shakirov, R.B., Obzhirov, A.I., Chung, N.N., Hein, Z.K., Fun, V.F., Syrbu, N.S., Maltseva, E.V., Yugai, I.G.,  Polonik N.S., An'D.D., NamV.V., Dep N.V.  Features of the natural gas distribution in the sediments and water of the north-western part of the Tonkin Bay (South China Sea, Vietnam) // Geography and natural resources.  2015. No. 4. P. 5-18/
  14. Mishukova G.I., Mishukov V.F., Obzhirov A.I., Pestrikova N.L., Vereshchagina O.F.  Features of the distribution of methane concentration and its fluxes at the water-atmosphere interface in the Tatar Strait in the Sea of ​​Japan.  // Meteorology and Hydrology.  Novosibirsk: FSBI "Research Center for Space Hydrometeorology "Planet "".  2015. No. 6. P. 89-96.
  15. Obzhirov A.I., Pestrikova N.L., Mishukova G.I., Mishukov V.F., Okulov A.K.  Distribution of methane content and fluxes in the waters in the Sea of ​​Japan, in the Sea of ​​Okhotsk and in the sub-Kuril part of the Pacific Ocean // Meteorology and Hydrology.  Novosibirsk: FSBI "Research Center for Space Hydrometeorology "Planet "".  2016. № 3. P. 71-81.
  16. Jin Y.K., Kim Y.G., Baranov B., Shoji H., Obzhirov A. Distribution and expression of gas seeps in a gas hydrate province of the northeastern Sakhalin continental slope, Sea of Okhotsk // Marine and Petroleum Geology V.28, 2011. P.1844-1855
  17. Minami H., Tatsumi K.,Hachikubo A., Yamashita S., Sakagami H., Takahashi N., Shoji H., Jin Y.K., Obzhirov A., Nikolaeva N.,Derkachev A. Possible variation in methane flux caused by gas hydrate formation on the northeastern continental slope off Sakhalin Island, Russia. // Geo-Marine Letters. V.32 № 5-6, 2012. P. 525-534.
  18. Kim Y.G., Lee S.M., Jin Y.K., Baranov B., Obzhirov A., Salomatin A., Shoji H. The stability of gas hydrate field in the northeastern continental slope of Sakhalin Island, Sea of Okhotsk, as inferred from analysis of heat flow data  and its implications for slope failures // Marine and Petroleum Geology V.45, 2013. P.198-207
  19. Ershov V.V., Shakirov R.B., Obzhirov A.I. Isotopic-geochemical characteristics of free gases of the South Sakhalin mud volcano and their relationship to regional seismicity// Doklady Earth Sciences. 2011. Т. 440. № 1. С. 1334-1339 (translated version)
  20. Gresov A.I., Yatsuk A.V., Obzhirov A.I., Razvozzhaeva E.P., Kirillova G.L. Gas-geochemical evaluation of the petroleum potential of the Birofeld graben of the Middle Amur sedimentary basin (Russian Far East)// Russian Journal of Pacific Geology, Т.6, № 2, 2012. Р. 143-157 (translated version)
  21. Granin N.G., Mizandrontsev I.B., Obzhirov A.I., Vereshchagina O.F., Gnatovskii R.Y., Zhdanov A.A. Oxidation of Methane in the Water Column of Lake Baikal. //Doklady Earth Sciences, 2013, V. 451, Part 1, P.784–786 (translated version)
  22. ObzhirovA.I., Maltseva E.V., Gresov A.I., Kotlyarova O.S., Okulov A.K. Hydrocarbon potential of primorsky Krai // Gorny Zhurnal, V.4, 2013.  P. 9 - 13 (translated version)
  23. Academician Akulichev V.A., Obzhirov A.I., Shakirov R.B., Maltseva E.V., Gresov A.I., Telegin Yu.A., 2014, published in Doklady Akademii Nauk, 2014, Vol. 454, No. 1,  Р. 94-96 (translated version)


  1. Obzhirov A.I., Mishukova G.I., Mishukov V.F.  Gas-geochemical indicators of ground and surface waters of Primorye and sea waters of the Peter the Great Bay // Monograph: Current ecological status of the Peter the Great Bay of the Sea of ​​Japan.  Vladivostok.  Publishing house of the Far Eastern Federal University.  2012. p. 239-251
  2. Yatsuk A.V., Obzhirov A.I., Gresov A.I., Korovitskaya E.V.  Geochemistry and geo-ecology of municipal solid waste // Monograph: The current ecological state of Peter the Great Bay, Sea of ​​Japan.  Vladivostok.  Publishing house of the Far Eastern Federal University.  2012. p. 426-438
  3. A.I.  Obzhirov, RB Shakirov Complex geological and geophysical studies of gas hydrates in the Sea of ​​Okhotsk // Geology and Geoecology of the continental margins of Eurasia.  Issue 4. Special edition.  Geology and mineral resources of the marginal seas of Eurasia - Moscow: GEOS, 2012. P. 122-136.
  4. Obzhirov A.I., Shakirov R.B.  Sources of hydrocarbon gases, the conditions for the formation of gas hydrates and their relationship with oil and gas deposits in the Sea of ​​Okhotsk.  // Oceanological studies of the Far East and the North-Western Pacific: in 2 books.  Ch.  ed.  V.A.  Akulichev;  POI FEB RAS.  Vladivostok: Dal'nauka, 2014. Vol.  2. C. 149-161.
  5. Pushchin I., Obzhirov A., Kovalenko S. Perspectives of oil and gas potential of the Sea of ​​Japan in the Sea of ​​Japan.  Monograph.  Due to Lambert Academic Publishing.  2015. 111 p.
Lab team
  • Renat Shakirov, Dr.Sc., head of laboratory
  • Anatoly Obzhirov, Dr.Sc., chief researcher
  • Alexandr Gresov, Dr.Dc., leading researcher
  • Galina Mishukova, PhD, senior researcher
  • Natalia Sokolova, PhD, senior researcher
  • Elena Maltseva, PhD, senior researcher
  • Yury Melnichenko,PhD, senior researcher
  • Andrey Yatsuk, PhD, senior researcher
  • Nikita Polonik, PhD, researcher
  • Olga Vereschagina, PhD, researcher
  • Anna Sorochinskaya, researcher
  • Anna Venikova, PhD, researcher
  • Aleksey Okulov, PhD, researcher
  • Evgeny Lifansky, lead engineer
  • Iosif Yugay, lead engineer
  • Alexandr Okulov, lead engineer
  • Vladimir Lepeshko, lead engineer
  • Alena Eskova, lead engineer
  • Andrey Holmogorov (graduate student), senior engineer
  • Timur Yakimov (graduate student), senior engineer
  • Dmitriy Shvalov, senior engineer
  • Vladislav Kalgin (graduate student), senior engineer
  • Daniil Makseev (graduate student), senior engineer
  • Tatiana Kriukova, engineer
  • Kristina Baldanova, technician
  • Pavel Jerdev, technician

Lab team pages