Imperial College London

Dr Craig Smalley

Faculty of EngineeringDepartment of Earth Science & Engineering

Visiting Professor







Royal School of MinesSouth Kensington Campus





Craig participates in teaching, training, research and consultancy in:

  • Harnessing Decision Analysis and Event-Based Risk Management tools to improve business performance, and to help focus and integrate geoscience, engineering and economic studies.
  • Practical handling of uncertainties in geoscience and engineering workflows, including quantitative use of analogue data and use of Bayesian logic.
  • Understanding, monitoring and improving recovery in oil and gas fields, including geochemical surveillance and production monitoring.
  • Unconventional oil and gas production mechanisms, including heavy oil, shale gas and shale oil.
  • Quantification of compartments and compositional variations in oil and gas reservoirs and hydrological systems using integrated pressure, density and compositional data combined with modelling of mixing processes.
  • Diagenesis and prediction of reservoir properties.
  • Natural tracers for natural and human-induced processes.

Current PhD students

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Alexandra Sarney: Shale reservoir properties deduced from petrography and image analysis.

Miriam Wright: Experimental approach to understanding shale gas production mechanisms.

Ruth Davey: Geochemical surveillance of shale gas production mechanisms

Selected publications

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A selection of recent and most-cited publications:

ALANE, A., LUMSDEN, P.J., SMALLEY, P.C., HALLAM, R., SALINO, P.A., WELLS, S.J.  and PRIMMER, T.J. (2015).  The Reservoir Technical Limit approach applied to maximizing recovery from volumetric and aquifer-drive gas fields.  SPE paper 175004.

GO, J., BORTONE, I., MUGGERIDGE, A.H. & SMALLEY, P.C. (2014).  Predicting Vertical Flow Barriers Using Tracer Diffusion in Partially Saturated, Layered Porous Media.  Transport in Porous Media, 105, 255-276.

DALE, A., JOHN, C.M., MOZLEY, P.S., SMALLEY, P.C. & MUGGERIDGE, A.M. (2014). Time-capsule concretions: Unlocking burial diagenetic processes in the Mancos Shale using carbonate clumped isotopes.  Earth and Planetary Science Letters 394, 30-37.

GO, J., SMALLEY, P.C., MUGGERIDGE, A.H. (2012). Appraisal of reservoir compartmentalization using fluid mixing time-scales: Horn Mountain Field, Gulf of Mexico. Petroleum Geoscience, 18, 305-314.

SATHAR, S., WORDEN, R.H., FAULKNER, D.R. & SMALLEY, P.C. (2012). The effect of oil saturation on the mechanism of compaction in granular materials: Higher oil saturations lead to more grain fracturing and less pressure solution. Journal of Sedimentary Research 82, 574-581.

HOUSTON, S.J, YARDLEY, B.W.D. & SMALLEY, P.C. (2011).  The relative importance of buffering and brine inputs in controlling the abundance of Na and Ca in sedimentary formation waters, Marine and Petroleum Geology, 28, 1242-1251.

SMALLEY, P.C. & MUGGERIDGE, A.H. (2010).  Reservoir compartmentalization – Get it before it gets you.  In: JOLLEY, S., FISHER, Q.J., Ainsworth, B., Vrolijk, P. and Delisle, S. (Eds.), Reservoir Compartmentalization.  Geological Society Special Publication 347, 43-53.

SMALLEY, P.C., ROSS, B., BROWN, C.E., MOULDS, T.P. & SMITH, M.J. (2009) Reservoir Technical Limits: A Framework for Maximizing Recovery from Oil Fields.  SPE Reservoir Evaluation and Engineering, August 2009, 610-617.

SMALLEY, P.C., BEGG, S.H., NAYLOR, M., JOHNSEN, S. & GODI, A. (2008). Handling Risk and Uncertainty in Petroleum Exploration and Asset Management: An Overview.  AAPG Bulletin 91, 1251-1261.

SMALLEY, P.C., ROSS, B., BROWN, C.E., MOULDS, T.P. & SMITH, M.J. (2007) Reservoir Technical Limits: A Framework for Maximizing Recovery from Oil Fields.  SPE Paper 109555.

HOUSTON, S.J., YARDLEY, B.W.D., SMALLEY, P.C. & COLLINS, I. (2007). Rapid fluid-rock interaction in oilfield reservoirs.  Geology, 35, 1143-1146.

HADDAD, S.C., WORDEN, R.H., PRIOR, D.J. & SMALLEY, P.C. (2006). Quartz overgrowths in the Fontainebleau Sandstone, Paris Basin, France: Crystallography and implications for cement growth.  Journal of Sedimentary Research, 76, 244-256.

MUGGERIDGE, A.H., ABACIOGLU, Y., ENGLAND, W.A. & SMALLEY, P.C. (2004).  The dissipation of anomalous pressures in the subsurface.  Journal of Geophysical Research 109, B11104, 1-16

MUGGERIDGE, A.H., ABACIOGLU, Y., ENGLAND, W.A. & SMALLEY, P.C. (2004).  The rate of pressure dissipation from abnormally pressured compartments.  AAPG Bulletin 89, 61–80

SMALLEY, P.C., ENGLAND, W.A., MUGGERIDGE, A.H., ABACIOGLU, Y. & CAWLEY, S. (2004).  Rates of reservoir fluid mixing: implications for interpretation of fluid data.  In: CUBITT, J.M., ENGLAND, W.A. & LARTER, S. (Eds.), Understanding Petroleum Reservoirs: towards an Integrated Reservoir Engineering and Geochemical Approach.  Geological Society, London, Special Publication 237, pp99-113.

WORDEN, R.H., SMALLEY, P.C. & BARCLAY, S.A. (2003). H2S and diagenetic pyrite in North Sea sandstones: due to TSR or organic sulphur compound cracking?  Journal of Geochemical Exploration 78-79, 487-491.

68. Marchand, A.m.e, Smalley, p.c., Haszeldine, r.s. & Fallick, a.e. (2002)

Note on the Importance of Hydrocarbon-fill for Reservoir Quality Prediction in Sandstones.  AAPG Bulletin 86, 1561-1571.

MARCHAND, A.M.E., HASZELDINE, R.S., SMALLEY, P.C., MACAULAY, C.I. & FALLICK, A.E. (2001).   Evidence for reduced quartz cementation rates in oil-filled sandstones.  Geology 29, 915-918.

SMALLEY, P.C. (2000). Heavy oil and viscous oil.  In: Modern Petroleum Technology, Volume 1: Upstream) (Dawes, R, ed.).  Institute of Petroleum, London, UK, pp409-435.

WORDEN, R.H., SMALLEY, P.C. & CROSS, M. (1999). The influence of rock fabric and mineralogy on thermochemical sulphate reduction: Khuff Formation, Abu Dhabi.  Journal of Sedimentary Research 70, 1210-1221.