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Myles Moore, PhD

Myles incorporates field data with geochemical analyses to understand how surface water and groundwater interact and transport. He has used this expertise to understand the mechanisms of how oil, natural gas, and brine form in the subsurface and can then later migrate into groundwater aquifers along with understanding hydrologic cycling in agricultural fields.

Myles attended State University of New York (SUNY) at Oneonta for his undergraduate studies, majoring in water resource management and minoring in chemistry. For his bachelors work he sampled water and soil from lakes, rivers, and streams throughout upstate New York to understand how mercury and other toxic metals were being incorporated into fish.

He then attended the Ohio State University (OSU) on a research and teaching fellowship, where he received his master and doctoral degrees. During this time, he expanded upon his scientific communication abilities by teaching the introduction to earth science lectures and lab sessions. He also developed new techniques to collect and analyze gas samples for hydrocarbon and noble gas abundance and isotopic compositions using gas chromatography and noble gas mass spectrometry. These techniques were employed to understand how hydrocarbons could form in complex environments such as coalbed methane and gas hydrate reservoirs. This work also helped to delineate the source of fugitive gas and brine contamination in West Virginia, where multiple sources of oil and gas could have been contaminating drinking water aquifers. While at OSU he also developed a technique to extract water out of soil to analyze the oxygen and hydrogen isotopic composition to understand how water was migrating in agricultural fields and being used by crops.

After this, he did a student contractor position at the USGS Denver, where he expanded further upon his understanding of how oil and gas from well fields or fertilizer from agricultural fields could impact drinking water quality. This involved learning additional noble gas mass spectrometry methods, to analyze the dissolved gas in water samples collected from these complex environments.

He then attended Colorado School of Mines, where he further advanced his understanding of how hydrocarbon composition can change due to the migration of oil and gas. This work helped to understand the conditions in which hydrate blockages could occur in oil and gas transmission lines. This involved mimicking transmission oil and gas line conditions at varying temperatures, pressures, and water and oil contents to determine when hydrate blockage could occur and the amount of methanol that would be required to remove that blockage.

In addition to the field sampling and analytical lab skills Myles has developed from his studies, he also has advanced his data interpretation and statistical abilities. He has incorporated mixing, gas fractionation migration, and sourcing models to understand where water has migrated from, what sources of water are contributing to groundwater reservoirs, and where contaminated groundwater could be migrating next. He pairs these modeling results with statistical data to demonstrate how correlations between geochemical parameters and groups of data can provide evidence as to the processes controlling groundwater flow in these complex environments.


Education and Certifications

  • Post-doctoral Researcher: Colorado School of Mines

  • Post-doctoral Researcher: The Ohio State University

  • Doctorate in Geochemistry: The Ohio State University

  • Master of Earth Science: The Ohio State University

  • Bachelor of Applied Science in Water Resource Management and a minor in Chemistry: The State University of New York at Oneonta

Affiliations and Memberships*

  • Geological Society of America Member

  • American Geophysical Union member

  • European Geosciences Member

  • Groundwater Focus Committee of Indiana Member

Honors and Awards

  • 2021        Star award for individual scientific contributions, USGS

  • 2019         Distinguished Senior Ph.D. Graduate Student Award, SES, OSU

  • 2018         Co-Recipient of the Society for Organic Petrology Dalway Swaine Award

  • 2016         Graduate Teaching Award, School of Earth Sciences, OSU

  • 2013          2014 Best and Brightest Award, SUNY Oneonta

  • 2013         Fliesher Field Geology Scholarship

  • 2013         Provost’s List

  • 2010 - 2014     Dean’s List SUNY Oneonta

  • 2012         Excellence in Water Resources, Geology and Earth Sciences

  • 2011         Kluge Academic Scholarship

  • 2010 - 2014     Ancillary Services Scholarship

  • 2009            Eagle Scout, Troop 271, Mahopac Falls, NY

Abstracts and Presentations

  • “The development of gas isotope tracers for hydrocarbon exploration in unconventional shales” Geological Society of America, Phoenix, Arizona, 2019.

  • “Improved sampling technique to measure noble gas and hydrocarbon composition of gas hydrate reservoirs in Green Canyon, Block GC 955, Gulf of Mexico” Goldschmidt, Barcelona, Spain, 2019.

  • “Water cycling on cultivated land: an investigation of the two water worlds hypothesis in central Ohio” Geological Society of America, Indianapolis, Indiana, 2018.

  • “Noble gas and hydrocarbon geochemical composition of fluids associated with gas hydrate formation in cores from Gulf of Mexico Green Canyon, Block GC 955” Geological Society of America, Indianapolis, Indiana, 2018.

  • “Noble gas and hydrocarbon composition of gas hydrate reservoirs in Green Canyon, Block GC 955” Goldschmidt, Boston, Massachusetts, 2018.

  • “Baseline geochemistry of natural occurring methane and saline groundwater in an area of unconventional shale gas development through time” American Geophysical Union, New Orleans, Louisiana, 2017.

  • “The source and timing of hydrocarbon generation in gas hydrate reservoirs in Green Canyon Block 955” American Geophysical Union, New Orleans, Louisiana, 2017.

  • “Integrating hydrocarbon and noble gas geochemistry to determine source and timing of natural gas formation in coalbed methane reservoirs” Goldschmidt, Paris, France, 2017.

  • “The genetic source and timing of natural gas formation in coalbed methane reservoirs in the Illinois Basin, USA” Applied Isotope Geochemistry, Copper Mountain, Colorado, 2016.

  • “Noble gas, hydrocarbon, and nitrogen isotopic compositions of coalbed methane reservoirs from the Illinois Basin” Geological Society of America, Denver, Colorado, 2016.

  • “Noble gas and hydrocarbon geochemistry of coalbed methane fields from the Illinois Basin” Geological Society of America, Baltimore, Maryland, 2015.

  • “Groundwater flow and geochemistry at greenwoods conservancy” Northeastern Geological Society of America, Lancaster, Pennsylvania, 2014.

  • “Geochemical assessment of stream sediments along Susquehanna Estuary system” Geological Society of America Conference, Denver, Colorado, 2013.

  • “Presence of mercury and comparison to other metals in lakes, rivers, and streams in central New York” Northeastern Geological Society of America, Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, 2013."

Science and Products

*Disclaimer: Listing outside positions with professional scientific organizations on this Staff Profile are for informational purposes only and do not constitute an endorsement of those professional scientific organizations or their activities by the USGS, Department of the Interior, or U.S. Government