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5 December 2009: I'm reading this page because I have an exam on Monday about Petroleum Geology and in my notes the oil and gas windows are completely different from this article: Oil window: ~60 => 170°C Gas window: ~170 => 230°C Can anyone check? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:37, 5 December 2009 (UTC)

Chemical formulas?[edit]

I am not a chemist but I don't understand why kerogen is made up of chemical compounds but doesn't come with formulas - such as methane is CH4. Someone with more knowledge Dr. J. F. Kenney wrote to me:

"If you can find out what "kerogen" is, please do let me know.This magical substance, - which occupies a position vis a vis petroleum, as did the Philosopher's Stone in medieval times, - cannot be found in any chemical database. I should like to know: (1), its chemical formula; (2), its stereographic structure; and (3), its chemical potential (i.e., its molar Gibbs free enthalpy of formation.)"

(comment by

I am not a chemist either, however your confusion lies in thinking that kerogen is a chemical compound. It isn't. It is a material composed of an extremely variable assortment of very high molecular weight organic molecules (mostly carbon and hydrogen but also some oxygen, sulfur, nitrogen etc) - similar in concept to gasoline except that gasoline is composed of a less variable assortment of low molecular weight hydrocarbons. The variability of the compounds that make up kerogen means that determining their individual chemical formulas is very difficult and pointless. Instead they are typically described by average Hydrogen:Carbon ratios, as they are in this article. Toiyabe 17:25, 16 December 2005 (UTC)

'Formation' section[edit]

I've commented out the 'Formation' section pending improvement ... it contained only a not-very-clear parenthetical until the last edit when a wikipedia self-referential comment was added. Could someone take a look at this section and add at least one clear text content sentence and bring the section back into the article? Thank you. Regards, User:Ceyockey (talk to me) 12:43, 30 April 2006 (UTC)

Formation of Kerogen[edit]

At the demise of living matter, the organic matter begins to undergo decomposition or degradation. In this break-down process, (which is basically the reverse of photosynthesis, large biopolymers from proteins and carbohydrates begin to partially or completely dismantle. Akin to survival principles, the dismantled components (some completely dismantled, others partially dismantled) come together to form or constitute new unique polymers appropriately referred to as geopolymers, which are the precursors of kerogens[1]. This results in varied molecular weights of the kerogens thus formed and subsequently explains why kerogens do not come up with definite chemical formulae.


...of the word would be very illustrative. Thank you. Typofier 18:45, 19 February 2008 (UTC)

What is "Ocean or lake material"[edit]

This term is used without any links or definition. What is it? Is it accumulated vegetable matter like leaves, or animal remains, or what? --DThomsen8 (talk) 00:18, 10 August 2009 (UTC)

It is you believe in it? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:51, 10 September 2012 (UTC)


The article refers to geopolymers as if they are fundamental to the concept of Kerogen. But then the rest of the article says nothing about alumino-silicates and describes Kerogen as an organic polymer. The geopolymer page is clear that geopolymers are mineral based (silica, alumina, phosphorous) but may contain organic components. I believe there is research on incorporating humic compounds in geopolymers. AFAIK, Kerogen need not incorporate alumino-silicates in it's structure and this article should not mention geopolymers, or mention them only in relation to research on humic-alumino-silicate (or other bio-mineral co-polymer) compounds. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Permafacture (talkcontribs) 00:25, 19 July 2013 (UTC)

  1. ^ Kudzawu-D'Pherdd, R., 2010. A Write Up In Petroleum Geochemistry - (EASC 616), Department of Earth Science, University of Ghana-Legon, (unpublished).