An accurate picture of thermal maturity of a source rock is crucial for understanding
and exploring for both conventional and unconventional resources. The industry
standard for evaluating thermal maturity is vitrinite reflectance analysis, a technique
that requires both specialized equipment and technical expertise. The Discovery Group
is one of the few organizations that has these capabilities. We have complete sample
preparation facilities in-house, two high-quality microscopes devoted solely to measuring
vitrinite reflectance, and several trained organic petrographers on staff. We primarily
study regional-scale thermal maturity questions by examining coal or coaly material, but
we can also analyze maceral reflectance and fluorescence in shale.
Vitrinite reflectance histogram for coaly material in the J-sandstone of the DJ Basin.