Definition of kerogen in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈkɛrədʒ(ə)n/


[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.
Example sentences
  • 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.
  • It should be mentioned that the bulk of reduced carbon on Earth is sediment-bound kerogen, which most probably is of biological origin.


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

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: kero|gen

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