From AAPG Wiki
A thermal process where large molecules break apart into smaller molecules during burial maturation or in a refinery. Kerogen in source rocks and oil in reservoirs are cracked to generate lighter petroleum products at high temperatures.
- Peters, Kenneth E., David J. Curry, and Marek Kacewicz, 2012, An overview of basin and petroleum system modeling: Definitions and concepts, in Peters, Kenneth E., David J. Curry, and Marek Kacewicz, eds., Basin modeling: New horizons in research and applications: AAPG Hedberg Series no. 4, p. 1-16.