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Authors: Hosgormez, H.* 
Etiope, G.* 
Yalçin, N.* 
Title: New evidence for a mixed inorganic and organic origin of the Olympic Chimaera fire (Turkey): a large onshore seepage of abiogenic gas
Issue Date: Nov-2008
Series/Report no.: 4 /8 (2008)
DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-8123.2008.00226.x
Keywords: abiogenic methane
isotopic composition
Subject Classification03. Hydrosphere::03.04. Chemical and biological::03.04.05. Gases 
Abstract: The Chimaera gas seep, near Antalya (SW Turkey), has been continuously active for thousands of years and it is known to be the source of the first Olympic fire in the Hellenistic period. New and thorough molecular and isotopic analyses including methane (approximately 87% v/v; δ to the power of 13 C1 from -7.9‰ to -12.3‰; δ to the power of 13 D1 from -119‰ to -124‰), light alkanes (C2 + C3 + C4 + C5 = 0.5%; C6+: 0.07%; δ to the power of 13 C2 from -24.2‰ to -26.5‰; δ to the power of 13 C3 from -25.5‰ to -27‰), hydrogen (7.5–11%), carbon dioxide (0.01–0.07%; δ to the power of 13 CCO2: -15‰), helium (approximately 80 ppmv; R/Ra: 0.41) and nitrogen (2–4.9%; δ to the power of 15 N from -2‰ to -2.8‰) converge to indicate that the seep releases a mixture of organic thermogenic gas, related to mature type III kerogen occurring in Palaeozoic and Mesozoic organic-rich sedimentary rocks, and abiogenic gas produced by low-temperature serpentinization in the Tekirova ophiolitic unit. Methane is not related to mantle or magma degassing. The abiogenic fraction accounts for about half of the total gas released, which is estimated to be well beyond 50 ton year to the power of -1. Ophiolites and limestones are in contact along a tectonic dislocation leading to gas mixing and migration to the Earth’s surface. Chimaera represents the biggest emission of abiogenic methane on land discovered so far. Deep and pressurized gas accumulations are necessary to sustain the Chimaera gas flow for thousands of years and are likely to have been charged by an active inorganic source.
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