Oil and Gas, Exploration For - Research Article from Macmillan Encyclopedia of Energy

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Basics of Oil and Gas Traps

Source Rocks

Shales often are deposited with some organic matter, for example, microscopic plant or animal matter, that become part of the rock. When the shales are squeezed under the pressure of overlying rocks and heated by the natural heat flowing from the earth, oil and gas may be formed depending on the type of organic matter involved and the temperature to which the source rock is raised. If a rock is capable of producing oil or gas, it is referred to as a source rock because it is a source for the hydrocarbons. An important element of modern exploration is making certain that a new area being explored has source rocks capable of generating hydrocarbons.

The petroleum industry relies on organic geochemists to analyze the source rocks in new exploration environments. The geochemists evaluate the potential of a...

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This section contains 4,003 words
(approx. 14 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Oil and Gas, Exploration For Encyclopedia Article
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Macmillan Encyclopedia of Energy
Oil and Gas, Exploration For from Macmillan Encyclopedia of Energy. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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