A Rock Eval 6 analyzer, designed for the characterization of petroleum source rocks, was recently installed in the School of Geosciences at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. "This instrument is the industry standard for evaluating rocks for their ability to generate oil and gas." said David Borrok, Director of the School of Geosciences. "This is a big deal for us. This is only the second Rock Eval 6 analyzer to be installed at a University in the United States."
Last year, Dr. Brian Lock, with support from Drs. David Borrok and Brian Schubert, put together a successful enhancement grant proposal to the Louisiana Board of Regents to secure the roughly quarter million dollar instrument. "We shall have the facilities for undergraduate, graduate, and faculty research and hope to get involved in projects where we gain access to study material (conventional cores, primarily) in exchange for providing data." said Dr. Brian Lock, "I hope to see multiple thesis projects emerge."
The instrument is designed with two ovens to perform pyrolysis and oxidation of rock material. The gases generated during this heating are carefully measured. It is these relationships that provide information on hydrocarbon generating capacity. The instrument can also be used for a variety of environmental applications that involve the characterization of hydrocarbons and organic matter.