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UW’s EORI Publishes Report on Mowry Shale Thermal Maturity Mapping

August 25, 2021

The University of Wyoming’s Enhanced Oil Recovery Institute (EORI) has completed a map of thermal maturity of the Mowry Shale in the Powder River Basin.

Thermal maturity, the degree to which the total organic carbon in a formation has been transformed from kerogen to producible hydrocarbons due to heat and pressure, is an important measure for not just the quality of a source rock, but also helps for delineating areas more favorable for unconventional drilling. EORI’s report of thermal maturity of the Mowry Shale in the Powder River Basin provides a detailed map based on a large public Tmax data set.

Key observations include:

-- Nearly all of the Mowry deeper than 8,000 feet currently generates hydrocarbons.

-- The basin axis has shifted slightly westward since the Mowry began generating hydrocarbons.

-- The Mowry 8,000-foot line plays an important role in demarcating the overpressured Mowry and related clay diagenesis.

-- The maximum maturity levels in the Mowry are in the “wet gas” stage.

The results of the investigation are detailed here and can be downloaded from EORI’s website.

EORI’s mission is to facilitate a meaningful and measurable increase in recoverable reserves and production of oil and natural gas in Wyoming that may otherwise not be realized. Key to this is the effective and efficient transfer of relevant technology, information and knowledge to Wyoming producers.

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