Training Courses

We provide several different training courses in the general areas of petroleum geochemistry and basin modeling, as well as a field trip in the Guadalupe Mountains of West Texas. We do not offer these courses regularly to the public, but if we do offer them publicly, we will provide that information here. Most of our offerings are private courses. If your company would like us to provide a short course, please contact us so that we can design a curriculum that meets your needs.

The general topics for courses we have provided in the past are shown below. Exact course contents and durations can be adjusted.



Source-Rock Kinetics (One day)

Course includes a description of our new one-run kinetics technology, with illustrations of its benefits and applications in maturity modeling, organofacies analysis, and as a thermal indicator in both conventional and unconventional plays. Lecture only.



The Hidden Benefits of Maturity Modeling (2 or 3 days)

Discussion and demonstration of how 1D maturity modeling can be used in novel ways to accrue significant but under-appreciated benefits. The emphasis of this new approach is on the model-building process, in which one carefully reconstructs the complete geologic history and integrates all aspects of that history (tectonics, lithology, rates, unconformities, thermal events, isostasy, eustasy, water depth and elevation through time, paleoclimate, and paleolatitude). Hands-on practice with our Novva software to learn how to achieve this goal.



Introduction to Maturity Modeling (3 to 5 days)

Discussion of all factors that impact 1D maturity modeling, including compaction, heat flow, thermal conductivities, surface temperatures through time, lithologies and their properties, working with temperature data, thermal indicators, and optimization, as well as hydrocarbon generation, expulsion, and cracking. In the longer versions the course will include hands-on practice using our new Novva software.



Fundamentals of Petroleum Geochemistry (3 days)

This course provides a solid foundation in both theoretical and applied petroleum geochemistry, beginning with understanding the geological controls on organofacies. That section is followed by a detailed explanation of how source-rock evaluation is carried out. Students will learn the three basic questions to be answered during source-rock evaluation, the analytical methods used to acquire the data necessary for that evaluation, and basic principles of data interpretation. The course will also provide a foundation in isotope and molecular geochemistry (gas chromatography and gc/ms of biomarkers), and the students will learn to apply those technologies in understanding and differentiating organofacies, and in carrying out oil-source and oil-oil correlations. Gas geochemistry will be discussed briefly. Emphasis will be on mastering the basic concepts of geochemistry rather than on the most-complex technologies. Some practice exercises will be provided.



Biomarkers and Carbon Isotopes: Technologies and Exploration Applications (2 days)

This course provides a basic understanding of various kinds of biomarkers and isotopes that explorationists will need in order to read reports and published papers, understand oral presentations, and make decisions about new analytical work to be performed on samples from their exploration programs. The lectures will provide a basic description of molecular structures, origin of biomarkers, transformations of biomarkers in the subsurface as a result of heating, their use as organofacies indicators and thermal indicators, and cautions about controversies and possible misuse. The basic principles governing isotopes and isotope fractionation will be explained, and the use of carbon isotopes for correlating oils with oils and oils with source rocks will be covered. Gas isotopes and mud-gas isotope logging will be discussed. Some simple exercises will be provided.



Organofacies in an Exploration Context: Conventional and Unconventional Plays (1 day)

This course will emphasize both the theoretical and practical aspects of identifying and understanding organofacies. Topics to be discussed include the factors that enhance preservation of organic matter, and the environments and conditions through geologic time where preservation is most favored; factors that enhance biologic productivity; and geochemical methods, especially biomarkers of many types and source-rock kinetics, that are used to understand and distinguish different organofacies. Understanding organofacies will increase in importance in the future as its critical role in controlling economic viability within unconventional plays is recognized.




West Texas Field Trip (Guadalupe Mountains) (3 days)

This field trip to West Texas and Southeastern New Mexico provides an overview of carbonate and clastic depositional systems in the Permian Guadalupe Mountains. Spectacular outcrops of progradational sequences represent a variety of depositional and diagenetic facies. Participants will walk through deep- to shallow-water Permian environments to recognize reservoir geometries. Subsurface models have shown that these outcrop areas can be directly applied to reservoir porosity potential for hydrocarbon exploration and development. Petroleum-systems modeling of the Delaware and Midland Basins provides direct correlation to Permian sedimentation and timing of hydrocarbon generation in multiple source-rock formations. The field trip will provide a review of carbonate\clastic depositional systems and provide analog relationships to subsurface plays.