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Engineering Jobs Job Description of a Petroleum Geologist

Job Description of a Petroleum Geologist By Michael Wolfe, eHow Contributor

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Job Description of a Petroleum Geologist thumbnail Petroleum geologists look for oil.

Petroleum geologists, usually employed by oil and gas companies, are scientists responsible for helping find and extract petroleum by analyzing the rock formations of different physical environments. Petroleum geologists may be employed on the staff of large corporations or they may work as independent consultants. Often, petroleum geologists will be consulted by investors looking to purchase the mineral rights to a plot of land. Other People Are Reading

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Duties

The primary duty of a petroleum geologist is to examine the data related to a physical location and assess the possibility that it harbors reserve of oil or gas. This is done by analyzing information such as maps, aerial photographs, data culled from seismic prospecting, and site-specific samples of rocks and minerals. Once he has interpreted the data, he will then collaborate with engineers to pick a suitable


location and method of test drilling. If deposits of petroleum are discovered, he will aide in developing methods of commercial extraction. Skills

Petroleum geologists must conduct a lot of work in the field, such as examining possible drilling sites, which requires that they be capable of strenuous physical activity. According to CareerPlanner.com, petroleum geologists must be able to interpret technical data related to geological findings and explain this material in layman's terms to other, nonspecialist people in their organization. This requires excellent communication and interpersonal skills. Geologists should also have a thorough knowledge of structural geology, engineering, sedimentology and stratigraphy.

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The majority of petroleum geologists hold at least a master's degree in a relevant field, such a geoscience, geology and geophysics, as most employers prefer a graduate degree. Some, however, hold only a bachelor's degree. The American Association of Petroleum Geologists also offers a voluntary certification to petroleum geologists, which some employers also favor. Some companies, however, favor professional experience over degrees. Outlook

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment chances in the oil and gas industry for holders of a master's degree in geology should be excellent, as many geologists are expected to retire or to be promoted to management positions, leaving a large number of open slots. Between 2008 and 2018, the number of open slots may well exceed the number of qualified applicants. Compensation


According to Payscale.com, the majority of petroleum geologists make a base salary of between between $67,849 and $132,095, with pay based primarily on experience. In addition, geologists receive between approximately $5,000 and $24,000 in bonuses and between $6,000 and $23,000 worth of payment in the form of profit sharing. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, petroleum geologists generally receive generous benefits as well.

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References

CareerPlanner.com: Petroleum Geologist DiplomaGuide.com: Petroleum Geologist Career Overview Sample Job Descriptions: Petroleum Geologist PayScale.com: Petroleum Geologist Salary Bureau of Labor Statistics: Geoscientists and Hydrologists

Photo Credit OIL image by brelsbil from Fotolia.com

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