Faculty of Science, Agriculture & Engineering

Short Courses (CPD)

Short Courses (CPD)

About the Course

Molecular Marker Compounds

This course is no longer delivered

Understand the geochemistry of biomarkers and their application in petroleum geochemistry. Identify different biomarkers, and use this skill in interpreting sample biomarker distributions.

Molecular marker compounds are commonly known as biomarkers. In this course, you'll learn:

  • about the geochemistry and application of molecular marker compounds in petroleum source rocks and crude oils
  • how to measure maturity and assess palaeoenvironment of deposition.

You'll be introduced to:

  • biomarkers, biomarker classes, isoprenoids, steroids, hopanoids, aromatic hydrocarbons, and non-hydrocarbon biomarkers
  • biomarkers in sediments
  • the application of biomarkers in petroleum geochemistry (biological sources, maturity)
  • the application of light hydrocarbon gases in petroleum geochemistry.

Who is the course aimed at?

Geoscientists working in the petroleum industry would benefit greatly from this course on biomarkers. The course is aimed both at those with no knowledge or for specialists wanting to update knowledge especially for those interested in oil-rock and oil-oil correlations.

This course is also delivered on at least one of the Faculty's Masters programmes in the School of Natural and Environmental Sciences, and you will attend alongside full and part time registered students.

Course dates
  • Monday 5 - Friday 9 November 2018 (duration 5 days): dates not confirmed

Objectives and Outline

Molecular Marker Compounds

Course Objectives

When you've finished the course, you'll understand:

  • the structures and origins of the important classes of biomarkers (including non-hydrocarbons) in petroleum geochemistry
  • how we can use molecular markers as indicators of maturity and organic matter origin
  • the strengths and weaknesses of the biomarker approach, and its routine applications in petroleum exploration

You'll also know how to:

  • identify the different biomarkers from their mass spectra and mass chromatogram fingerprints
  • put this ability into practice in the interpretation of the biomarker distributions of samples

Course Outline

  • Introduction to biomarkers.
  • Biomarker classes.
  • Applications of biomarkers to determination of maturity.
  • Biomarkers in sediments.
  • Markers for biological inputs.
  • Hopanoids.
  • Aromatic hydrocarbons.
  • Non-hydrocarbon biomarkers.
  • Light hydrocarbon gases.
  • BHPs, GDETs and IPLs.
Course dates
  • Monday 5 - Friday 9 November 2018 (duration 5 days): dates not confirmed

Further Information

Molecular Marker Compounds


Prerequisite knowledge

To attend the course, you should have a reasonable level of knowledge of the following topics:

  • Geology
  • Chemistry

Please contact the Professional Development Unit if you require further information.

Academic Module Outline

This course is also delivered as a Module (code CEG8621) on at least one of the Faculty's Masters programmes, the majority of which can be studied part time, making them suitable for those in employment. You will attend with full and part time registered students. The Academic Module Outline is available via the University's Module Catalogue.

Course Materials

During the course, you will be able to access course materials electronically using the University Wifi. We suggest that you bring a laptop or tablet with PDF viewer if you wish to refer to the notes during the course. Please ensure that you make sure your electronic device is fully charged, as access to charging points may be limited within the lecture rooms.

Update to Course Content

Please note that our courses are reviewed regularly, both in response to feedback and so that information about recent research and developments can be included. Thus, content may be subject to change.


Molecular Marker Compounds


Newcastle University


Molecular Marker Compounds


  • Molecular Marker Compounds
    • £1325 (duration 5 days)

We offer a 30 percent discount to full time students and to Newcastle University staff.

The course fee includes tuition, course materials, lunch and refreshments.

[ Information about Cancellations ]

Formal assessment may be available for this Course. Assessment attracts an additional fee of £365, and delegates will be issued with a transcript and Certificate of Credit Achieved.