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Additional recommended knowledge
It is a deep black and lustrous variety, and is less soluble in turpentine than the usual type of asphalt. It is the only solid petroleum source known. It was from Albertite that Kerosene was first created. It was first truly studied by New Brunswick geologist Abraham Gesner, who had heard stories of rocks that burned in the area.
Albertite is formed from oil shale which has become remobilised into liquid asphalt. The process of formation is as follows;
Albertite is named after the Albert County Mines in New Brunswick, Canada, from whence it was first found. The occurrence at Albert Mines existed as a series of discordant veins which were hosted in the core of an anticlinal closure of a fold. It was initially mistaken for coal. The geologists of the 1800s were at a loss as to describe how this coal apparently came to lie discordant to the strata of the area, as they did not yet understand the nature of the oil shale source rock, nor the fact that the albertite was essentially solidified asphaltum.
Albertite and controvesial theories
Albertite is often used to argue the abiogenic origin of coal because it was originally reported as a "liquid coal" and this is a basis for arguments under the current theories of the abiogenic origin of petroleum and coal. The work of various Russian scientists and Thomas Gold are based on this early misconception.
These arguments are based on an archaic interpretation by the geologists of the day, who described it as coal, and presupposed (correctly) that it had once been liquid, though wrongly as about it being a liquid form of coal. The abiogenic theorists particularly favor the sentence:
However, proper reading of the 1865 source states:
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Albertite". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.