Perhaps a review of the past may make us better geologists
in the future.
"Composition of Crude Oil and Its Relationship to
Stratigraphy in Wyoming," by John Hunt; Bulletin Vol. 37, 1953.
"The major differences between the Wyoming oils are
due to differences in their source material and environment of deposition."
A paper that provided quantitative data on oil differences
and attempted to relate them to source rock environments. An early
paper by a great contributor in organic geochemistry.
"Entrapment of Petroleum under Hydrodynamic Conditions,"
by M.K. Hubbert; Bulletin Vol. 37, 1953.
"The anticlinal theory, or so-called "gravitational"
theory, despite its effectiveness as a basis for petroleum exploration,
represents but a special case of oil and gas accumulations, and
is valid only when the associated ground water is in hydrostatic
If you haven't read this article, your geologic education
is still incomplete. It must have set the AAPG record for number
of pages containing equations -- 36!
Hubbert enjoyed converting his complex equations
into simple bench-top presentations. I remember him placing a cold,
empty beer can upside down on a gently inclined wet glass plate;
as the can warmed, the tiny increase in pore pressure provided by
the warming air in the can caused the can to suddenly slip down
the glass plate. This illustrated his concept of the role of pore
pressure in assisting glide planes for major thrust sheets.
Hubbert is best known today for his work on predicting
the decline of U.S. oil production. To me, his greatest contributions
were in describing the fundamental physics of hydraulic fracturing,
pore pressure, hydrodynamics, fluid flow through porous media and
many other areas where his contributions are now taken for granted.
One of our most distinguished geologists, Martha
Lou Broussard, started her career as a mathematical assistant to
Hubbert at Shell Development.