What do you know about the origin of Petroleum and the Inorganic Theory about it?


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Rebecca Hunt answered
There are two schools of thought which may explain the occurrence of petroleum within the earth's strata, and one of them is the inorganic theories under which there are 2 hypotheses:

  • Deep seated terrestrial hypothesis: Postulated by Dimitri Mendele'v, states that there are widespread petroleum deposits around the world. Metallic carbines located deep in the earth form acetylene when reacted with water in high temperatures. This acetylene then condenses to form heavier hydrocarbons.
  • Extraterrestial hypothesis: Proposed by Sokoloff, which states that hydrocarbons precipitated as rain from nebular matter which also contributed to the creation of the solar system. The earth's interior ejected the hydrocarbons into surface rocks.

However, there have been some observed problems and inconsistencies with inorganic theories:

  • There is a substantial lack of evidence in proving that the source of organic material that occurs in chronditic meteorites occurs due to the inorganic origin. This is because there is also a possibility that it was an original parent material, created organically.
  • There is also no field evidence which explains that inorganic processes occur in nature although this is the opposite for products with organic origin.

One may conclude that there are indeed instances that indigenous magmatic oil has occurred, although the frequency of these is rare, furthermore the accumulated pools of oil are also very low. Another problem that the inorganic theory poses is that any commercial accumulations are restricted to sedentary basins which results in a seeping of petroleum. In summary, the inorganic theory states that the thermal maturation of organic matter is what forms the petroleum.

The more compelling organic theories are likely to be more accurate in explaining the occurrence of petroleum which makes it a more believable organic development hypothesis.

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