Noble Gases in Oil and Gas Accumulations

  • Alain PrinzhoferEmail author
Part of the Advances in Isotope Geochemistry book series (ADISOTOPE)


Noble gas geochemistry consists of a series of inert natural tracers which allow quantitative geological modeling relative to the migration, trapping and extraction of hydrocarbon reserves. The noble gas data allow accurate description of complex natural and technological processes involved in identifying and extracting oil and gas discoveries. Among others, the origins of non hydrocarbon gas compounds such as CO2 present in hydrocarbon accumulations, the physical interactions between hydrocarbon phases and water, the dynamics of oil and gas migration through porous sedimentary rocks, are some of the current applications of noble gases to hydrocarbon exploration in high risk areas. Unconventional hydrocarbon exploration and production, which may represent the future of our hydrocarbon consumption, raise new questions which may also be assessed with these unique tracers. Oil and gas shale production as well as gas hydrates, are future targets which may benefit from the specific properties of noble gases as tracers in hydrocarbon fluids.


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1. HRT O and GRio de JaneiroBrazil

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