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Bridge collapse on I-35 north of Austin

SALADO, Texas (AP) — Emergency crews are responding to a reported bridge collapse along an interstate in Central Texas.

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Amazon begins Prime Now program in Dallas area

If you just have to have it now, as in one hour, you can, at least in the Dallas area, as Amazon.com Inc. announced Thursday it will offer Prime Now.

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Monty Bennett: Businessman, water district activist

Monty Bennett’s name will not appear on the ballot for the Tarrant Regional Water District board of directors yet he remains a powerful backstage player whose influence could shape the direction of the district’s business for years to come.

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Price appeal: Condos going up on Near Southside

Chris Brassard and Omar Diaz had apartments in mind when they built a 12-unit complex on May Street just south of West Magnolia Avenue on Fort Worth’s Near Southside. Then their leasing agent, Will Northern of Northern Realty Group, suggested they consider selling the units as condominiums.

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Texas jobless rate falls as employers add workers

Texas unemployment fell to 4.3 percent during February for the sixth straight month of declines, the Texas Workforce Commission reported Friday.

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Kyoto University to test new shale gas extraction method

The Yomiuri Shimbun.
TOKYO — A Kyoto University research team developed a new basic technology to extract shale gas trapped deep underground by injecting carbon dioxide into shale bedrock instead of water, The Yomiuri Shimbun has learned.

The research team said it plans to start a large-scale substantiative experiment to verify the technology in autumn, aiming for practical use of the technology within several years.

In addition to securing shale gas, a new energy resource, the newly developed technology is also expected to help combat global warming as it will confine CO2 underground.

A common method to extract shale gas is to frack hard shale bedrock by injecting pressurized water into shale formations. The more finely cracked the bedrock is, the more shale gas can be obtained. However, making ideal cracks in shale formations by injecting water is difficult because the liquid has a high viscosity.

According to the research team led by Kyoto University Professor Tsuyoshi Ishida and Assistant Professor Chen Youqing, CO2 becomes a "supercritical" fluid if it is heated to 31.1 C or more and subjected to pressure of at least 73 atmospheres. A supercritical fluid is very smooth and has properties midway between a liquid and gas.

The research team confirmed that supercritical CO2 injected into shale bedrock fractured the bedrock and created finer cracks more widely in comparison to the use of pressurized water.

Last autumn, Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation, an auxiliary organization of the Economy, Trade and Industry Ministry, designated the development of this technology as a research project.

In October, the university research team will start conducting a substantiative experiment to fracture granite, the hardness of which is similar to that of shale, in a hot spring area in Toyama Prefecture.

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