There are different types of shale, but the most talked about in recent months is oil shale. Oil shale is a sedimentary rock that releases a petrolium-like liquid when heated. It is formed when silt and organic material on lake and sea beds build up are heated and compressed over millions of years.
It’s a similar process to creating oil, but the heat and pressure is not as intense.
Shale is a fine grained, clastic sedimentary rock composed of mud that is a mix of flakes of clay minerals and tiny fragments of other minerals especially quartz and calcite. Shale is characterized by breaks along thin laminae or parallel layering or bedding less than one centimeter in thickness, called fissility. Compaction in the rock cycle is what forms shale.
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