Petroleum Geologist Salary
Job Description for Petroleum Geologist
Petroleum geologists are geoscientists who are typically employed by oil and gas companies, and their work revolves around determining geographical points at/in which to search for natural resources; in the specific field of petroleum geology, the focuses are discovery and production of oil. They generally surmise where to drill for oil by obtaining an idea of the areas beneath the surface, formulating a three-dimensional image measured against time, and preparing subsurface maps and diagrams of stratigraphic data which depict possible oil deposits. They obtain these ideas by studying various elements in the Earth's surface, including the presence of certain rocks and structural features. Although this information is studied using a variety of geophysical methods, the general location is determined using aerial photographs before these processes begin.Read More...
Petroleum geologists may also be involved in recommending contracts and releases regarding acquisition, retention, and release of land property. Candidates for this position are expected to have comprehensive knowledge of engineering, stratigraphy, and structural geology.
Petroleum geologists generally work during traditional business hours, although those who are self-employed may work more as consultants, particularly on weekends. Their work requires some communication with others, but primarily their employers for consultations. Their work is both indoors and outdoors, as they may conduct reports and analyze data from an office but also spend extensive time at drilling sites. Some employers may require a master's degree in a geology-related field, and some states require those who work with the public to obtain state-issued licenses.
Petroleum Geologist Tasks
- Provide technical input and guidance for exploring, appraising, and developing potential sites.
- Integrate many types of data and computations to create simulations, models, and hazard analysis.
- Scope and frame projects, including assigning roles and tasks.
- Model and create requirements for reservoirs and their use.
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Pay by Experience Level for Petroleum Geologist
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For many Petroleum Geologists, more experience generally translates to higher pay. The relatively untested earn a median of $99K per year, but survey respondents who have racked up five to 10 years of experience report a six-figure median of $122K. Petroleum Geologists see a median salary of $175K after reaching one to two decades on the job. Respondents who claim more than 20 years of experience may encounter pay that doesn't quite reflect their extensive experience; these veterans report a median income of around $180K.
Pay Difference by Location
With a pay rate for Petroleum Geologists that is 31 percent greater than the national average, Midland offers a comfortable salary for those in this profession. Petroleum Geologists will also find cushy salaries in Houston (+22 percent). Compared to the national average, San Antonio Petroleum Geologists have considerably lower salaries, 54 percent below the national average to be exact. Location appears to be a major driving force in pay for those in this profession. Employers in Pittsburgh and Dallas also lean toward paying below-median salaries (33 percent lower and 16 percent lower, respectively).