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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

Journal of Petroleum Geology

Abstract

Journal of Petroleum Geology, Vol.4, No.4, pp. 437-439, 1982

┬ęCopyright 2000 Scientific Press, Ltd.

EVIDENCE THAT STABLE CARBON ISOTOPES ARE NOT A RELIABLE CRITERION FOR Previous HitDISTINGUISHINGTop BIOGENIC FROM NON-BIOGENIC PETROLEUM

A. A. Giardini* and Charles E. Melton**

Departments of Geology* and Chemistry**, University of Georgia, Athens, GA, 30602, USA.


Abstract

The isotopic abundance of presumably-pristine primordial carbon has been determined by analyzing carbon dioxide entrapped in a 8.65 carat natural diamond of African origin. The results were 12C = 98.9275% and 14C = 1.0725%, which give 13C = -35.2 0/00. This value is well within the range used to assign a biogenic origin to carbon-containing compounds, i.e., more negative than -18.0 0/00. Similar negative values have been reported for some natural diamonds and carbon-bearing meteorites. It is concluded, therefore, that stable carbon isotopes can be an unreliable criterion for assigning a biogenic origin to petroleum.

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