Sustainable shale oil and gas Analytical chemistry, geochemistry, and biochemistry methods

By Vikram Rao, Rob Knight, Brian Thomas

This practical guide describes the operational details of production and environmental pitfalls of fracking—going beyond productivity improvement objectives—to explore cutting-edge analytic techniques and provide a better understanding of the issues and possible solutions. Published by Elsevier in partnership with RTI Press, Sustainable Shale Oil and Gas is the fourth volume in the Emerging Issues in Analytical Chemistry series, which is edited by RTI’s Brian F. Thomas.


Rao, V., Knight, R., & Thomas, B. (Ed.) (2016). Sustainable shale oil and gas: Analytical chemistry, geochemistry, and biochemistry methods. (1st ed.) (RTI Press Publication No. BK-Elsevier-04), (Emerging Issues in Analytical Chemistry; Vol. 4). Research Triangle Park, NC: RTI Press.


Vikram RaoVikram Rao, PhD, is executive director of the Research Triangle Energy Consortium (RTEC), an energy nonprofit founded by Duke University, North Carolina State University, RTI International, and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Rao advises RTI International, venture capital firm Energy Ventures, and firms BioLargo, Inc., Global Energy Talent Ltd., Eastman Chemical Company, Biota Technology, Inc., and Integro Earth Fuels, Inc. He is Chairman of the North Carolina Mining and Energy Commission. He retired as senior vice-president and chief technology officer of Halliburton Company in 2008. As an organization, RTEC views natural gas as a transitional fuel to a future dominated by renewables and recognizes deep divisions within the U.S. regarding the ability to safely produce natural gas domestically. An engineer by training, Rao understands shale gas–related technology and operations. He became familiar with the environmental issues related to shale gas while serving in a pro bono advisory capacity to a major nongovernmental organization. For more information about RTEC and Rao's vision for the future of the energy industry, visit

Rob KnightRob Knight, PhD, is a professor at the in the Biological Sciences Graduate Program at the University of California San Diego. His research interests include the human microbiome, microbial community ecology, and multi-omics analyses. His current areas of focus are bioinformatics and glycobiology. Dr. Knight is one of the founders of microbiome analytics.

Brian ThomasBrian F. Thomas, PhD, is Principal Scientist, Analytical Chemistry and Pharmaceutics, at RTI International. He has more than 20 years of experience in analytical chemistry and mass spectrometry. He is the principal investigator/co-principal investigator on two National Institute on Drug Abuse repository and purity specification contracts. His principal duties include overseeing the development of chromatographic assays and spectrophotometric assays for the qualitative and quantitative analysis of bulk chemicals or chemicals in dosage formulations, biological fluids, tissues, or other complex matrices. Dr. Thomas was recently awarded RTI’s President’s Award for his scientific contributions to the institute.

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