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The Petroleum System The petroleum system describes all of the geologic components and processes that are

necessary to generate and store hydrocarbons. A complete petroleum system must include mature source rocks, suitable migration pathways, reservoir rocks, traps and seals. More than one petroleum system may exist in a single basin. The system must also have the correct relative timing of formulation of these elements and processes for hydrocarbons to accumulate and be preserved. The components and critical timing relationships of a petroleum system can be displayed in a chart that includes 3 major systems namely, the Greater Palaeozoic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous Petroleum Systems. Oil and Gas Window The oil and gas window is a temperature-dependent interval in the subsurface where oil is generated and expelled from source rocks. The oil window is often in the 60-1200C intervals, while the corresponding gas window is in the 100-2000C intervals. The gas window has a similar definition to the oil window except the temperature difference. Oil starts out as organic material from algae, dead fish, or organic material found in fish fecal pellets. This must sink to an anaerobic bottom where the absence of oxygen allows it to decay. Then it must be covered with other sediments and pushed into the oil window. When the temperature is not hot enough to crack the organic matter into oil molecules, it becomes kerogen, but if it is 60-1200C or more, everything is cracked all the way into natural gas. Kerogen is classified on the basis of O:C and H:C ratios on a Van Krevelen Diagram. Type 1 kerogen contains alginate and amorphous (formless) organic matter, readily produces liquid hydrocarbon but its occurrences is limited and derives from lacustrine algae and forms only in anoxic (dissolved-oxygen depleted) lakes and several other unusual marine environments. Type 2 kerogen has a lower H:C and O:C ratio than type 1, produces a mix of gas and oil and has a good potential to produce petroleum. Type 3 kerogen has very low H:C and O:C ratio, include

materials resemble wood or coal of vitrinite type, and tends to produce gas with minor oil. Type 4 kerogens have the lowest H:C and O:C ratio and contains mostly decomposed organic matter of inertinite type and has no potential to produce hydrocarbons. Organic matter deposited in the ocean or lakes under anoxic conditions often form kerogens of type 1 and 2 that cracks to produce oil. Most terrestrial or higher land plants produce kerogens of type 3 and 4 that only produce gas during catagenesis (cracking process where organic kerogens breakdown into hydrocarbon). Therefore, source rocks of marine origin tend to be oil-prone and source rocks containing terrestrial organic matter tend to be gas-prone. The maturity of source rocks is the state of source rock with respect to its ability to generate oil and gas. As an oil-prone source rock matures, the generation of heavy oil is succeeded by medium to light oil. The maturity of source rocks reflects the ambient (surrounding) pressure and temperature as well as the duration of conditions favourable for hydrocarbon generation.