Definition of kerogen in English:

kerogen

noun

  • [mass noun] A complex fossilized organic material, found in oil shale and other sedimentary rock, which is insoluble in common organic solvents and yields petroleum products on distillation.

    • ‘It should be mentioned that the bulk of reduced carbon on Earth is sediment-bound kerogen, which most probably is of biological origin.’
    • ‘The bulk of organic matter in sedimentary rocks is in the form of kerogen: complex polymeric material that is insoluble in inorganic solvents, and difficult to analyse chemically.’
    • ‘These indices are independent of the organic matter abundance and strongly related to the elemental composition of kerogen.’
    • ‘Retorting is the process of using heat to decompose the kerogen, converting it into a liquid called shale oil.’
    • ‘Remarkably, when these carbon isotopes are traced back in geologic history, the average carbon isotopic composition of seawater and of most of the kerogen was similar to today.’

Origin

Early 20th century: from Greek kēros wax + -gen.

Pronunciation:

kerogen

/ˈkɛrədʒ(ə)n/