UPDATED July 29, 2009

Maintained by Tony Troutman (

Major repositories:

The Core Research Center of the University of Texas Bureau of Economic Geology is probably one of the largest and most important collections of core in the world. There are three separate facilities.

The Austin facility has core and cuttings from throughout Texas, the continental U.S., and the world. There are also collections of thin sections, geologic samples, and analytical tools like petrographic microscopes and the SEM at the Bureau. Sampling is normally done by Bureau staff. Core viewing here is quite efficient in a well-planned working area. I have discovered that many state geological surveys have transferred their core collections to the UT facility, making it a likely place to find core for anywhere in the US

The Midland facility was donated to the Bureau by Shell and houses significant amounts of core and cuttings from west and south Texas, the Rockies, and large amounts of core donated by Occidental Petroleum who purchased Altura. The facility does have rock saws donated by Oxy, and a core drill for sampling. It has no analytical equipment at this time.

The Houston facilityheld its grand opening in 2004, after being donated to the Bureau by BP. This is a state of the art facility that includes large collections of core, cuttings, chips, thin sections, paleo/palynology samples, geochemical samples, a library, and some analytical equipment such as microscopes.

The Bureau of Economic Geology is building a searchable database for their entire collection. The IGOR database does not have everything in it yet. I have an Excel spreadsheet version of the Midland and Austin collections that is likely to still be available from the Bureau.

Geophysical well logs for all of Texas and some other areas are also available from the Bureau.

The USGS Core Research Facility in Denver, Colorado is probably the largest single collection of core, cuttings, and samples in the world. To search the USGS inventory for core or cuttings you will need to search by township/range or by latitude/longitude. It is possible to copy the lists off of the USGS web pages and convert them to spreadsheet files for more detailed searching, such as formation or field.

Other repositories and resources:

Alabama Oil and Gas Board core collection is searchable by county, township and range.

Alaska Department of Natural Resources, Division of Oil and Gas, has over 11,000 well logs available, covering every well in Alaska that is over two years old and on public lands. Many of these are available in digital format such as DLIS, LIS and LAS formats and can be placed on an FTP site for transfer. The USGS maintains a large database of exploratory well logs and images for the National Petroleum Reserve,   Alaska (NPRA) that includes seismic data. Here is another USGS compilation of NPRA data.

Arkansas has a cuttings and core library  here, and the inventory list may be downloaded from that page.

California's only core repository is located at the California State University in Bakersfield, with over 4000 well cores and cuttings. California well-logs can be searched at the Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources. Another good resource for California is the San Joaquin Geological Society which has a page of links.

Colorado has production information here and well logs in raster form can be searched here. They have a GIS available here.  The GIS is one of the best GIS systems on the web for oil and gas, and each well is clickable, leading to a link that will allow downloading tif images of the well logs and all other documents held in the file.  In case these links may stop working, the main page is here.

The Canadian Province of Alberta, Alberta Geological Survey has a core facility in Edmonton.

The Canadian Province of British Columbia, Ministry of Energy and Mines has a public core facility in Charlie Lake.

Florida has a downloadable software program that contains over 5,000 lithologic descriptions of core and cuttings from the state.

Georgia maintains a core and cuttings repository that can be contacted using the number listed on the Geologic Survey Branch website.

Indiana Geological Survey has a searchable database of 70,000 wells.

Integrated Ocean Drilling Program has core storage facilities and well logs at four different locations in the US and Germany.

Illinois State Geological Survey has an online mapping interface that allows access to over 180,000 well records. . Illinois has a database of over 164,000 wells that does not appear to be searchable online. The main page for the ISGS is here.

Iowa maintains a rock library of core which can be searched  on GEOSAM.

Kansas Geological Survey maintains a collection of well cuttings searchable at this location.

Kentucky Geological Survey, University of Kentucky has a large core collection searchable here. Well data is searchable here.

Louisiana has production information, and raster images of well-logs searchable at this location. The Louisiana Geological Survey has a core repository with core from six states, including Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Mississipi, Texas, and a miscellaneous group.

Massachusetts has a core repository with 70,000 linear feet of core, a small thin section collection, and other samples that appears to be in danger of becoming homeless.

Michigan Basin Core Research Laboratory has a list of cores available here, and another list here. Mudlogs, thin section photos, core photos, and a considerable amount of other data is available online.

Minnesota:The Limnological Research Center Core Facility is an open laboratory funded by the National Science Foundation and the University of Minnesota that is tightly coupled with LacCore, the National Lacustrine Core Repository.

Mississippi Oil and Gas Board has a searchable database of well logs.

Missouri Geologic Survey and Resource Assessment maintains databases containing information on drill logs, described sections, mineral prospects, abandoned underground mines, geologic mapping and active mineral producers including a repository of nearly 3,000 drill core containing nearly 3 million feet of core. It is not searchable online. Missouri geologic maps are coming on line and can be found here.

Montana Board of Oil and Gas has a large collection of cores, cuttings, and other well and geologic data, that is not yet searchable online. Included in the board's database are more than 850,000 monthly production records, 11,000 records on core chips and samples, 120,000 formation tops, 80,000 well history records, and detailed information for each of the nearly 35,000 wells drilled in the state.

Nebraska's Oil and Gas Conservation Commission has a downloadable list of basic well data for the state.

Nevada has a list of oil and gas wells.

New Mexico Bureau of Geology and Mineral Resources, a division of New Mexico Tech has a data and core library  with about 15,000 wells covered and logs from 50,000 wells.

New York Division of Mineral Resources has a downloadable well list. The site also says that well logs may be searched and copied in the Albany office.

North Dakota Industrial Commission, Oil and Gas Division has a searchable list of existing oil wells (no logs), along with production statistics and information about all seismic surveys in the state on its website. They also have a GIS Map server.

Ohio Department of Natural Resources has an oil and gas well database .

Pennsylvania maintains a well information system that is available for a one-time fee of $5,000 plus $500 per year.

Oklahoma has a description of the well data and core available.   The Energy Libraries Online has core descriptions and other data, but is a subscription service after a 15 day trial. A set of type logs is searchable here. The Oklahoma City Geological Society has well logs available to members. A useful set of links for Oklahoma is at the Oklahoma Geological Survey's Oil and Gas page.

Schlumberger offers a number of free software utilities for viewing well logs. Schlumberger offers an excellent free utility for converting digital log formats called Log Data Toolbox.

South Carolina has a core repository with core from 1200 drill holes.

South Dakota has a number of searchable databases of core, cuttings, lithologic logs, oil and gas data, publications, and a bibliography.

Utah has a core repository. The facility currently holds cuttings from more than 3,500 wells; core samples from more than 700 wells and a collection of type oils from all producing formations in the state, as well as various other types of geologic samples.

West Virginia Geological and Economic Survey's Oil and Gas Data System has cores available for more than 80 wells, and samples available for more than 4,000 wells, along with other data.

A list of links to all state geological surveys from the Association of American State Geologists.

The USGS provides a database of downloadable world geologic maps.

Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission has a map server here. Wyoming cores are searchable here. LAS format log files are searchable by geographic location here.

List of Oil and Gas related links for state organizations maintained by the Texas Railroad Commission.



World wide list of geological surveys

The Integrated Ocean Drilling Program has core from the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program, the Ocean Drilling Program, and the Deep Sea Drilling Project stored in several repositories worldwide.

The Polarstern Core Repository has marine sediment cores  at the Alfred Wegener Institute in Germany.  

I will be adding more as I have time to find them. If you know of any I would appreciate the information and can be contacted here.