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Petroleum geochemistry has historically relied on the analysis of field samples – source rocks, oils and gases. Data collected for individual samples are considered characteristic of a specific geographical location and geological position that, when aggregated with data from other samples, can be extrapolated to larger scales. These scale-ups may be as small as a few metres, such as a detailed characterization of source rocks penetrated by a single well, to global, such as petroleum systems that now span continents due to plate tectonics. However, a single sample contains a wealth of information at smaller scales. In situ analytical...

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