Methods for paleotemperature estimation using vitrinite reflectance data: A critical evaluation

  • Vető I. 
  • P. Dövényi
Part of the Lecture Notes in Earth Sciences book series (LNEARTH, volume 5)


Several empirical models were published to describe the relation between burial history, geothermal conditions and the maturity of organic matter in sedimentary basins. Four widely accepted models (LOPATIN, BOSTICK, HOOD, WAPLES) are compared on the basis of 60 measured vitrinite reflectance profiles from different parts of the world. All the reflectance data were taken from the literature together with burial histories and rock temperature.

Since a pure statistical approach of the errors would have little sense, we tried to investigate the problem by the study of the following relations:
  • errors vs. type of burial history

  • errors vs. level of measured reflectance.

In this way we are able to discuss the application limits of the studied methods. Our main conclusion is that satisfactory results can be obtained by the HOOD and WAPLES method in a limited reflectance range (Ro=0.4 – 1.0%).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vető I. 
    • 1
  • P. Dövényi
    • 2
  1. 1.Hungarian Geological SurveyBudapest
  2. 2.Geophysical DepartmentEötvös UniversityBudapest

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