Robert Loucks is a senior research scientist at the Bureau of Economic Geology. He received his B.A. degree from the State University of New York at Binghamton in 1967 and his Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin in 1976. His general research interests include carbonate and siliciclastic sequence stratigraphy, depositional systems, diagenesis, and reservoir characterization. His present research includes deep buried reservoirs in the Gulf of Mexico, evaporite and carbonate paleokarst, and pore networks in carbonates, sandstones, and mudrocks

Areas of Expertise

Research in carbonate, sandstone, and mudrock stratigraphy, sedimentology, diagenesis, reservoir characterization, and pore network analysis.


Research Locations



President's Certificate for Excellence in Presentation - Energy and Minerals Division, AAPG Annual Convention (2008)

Honorable Mention, Best Poster Paper - SEG 2007 Annual Meeting (2008)

Outstanding Research Award - Jackson School of Geosciences (2008)

Best Poster Award (with Robert Reed) - Energy and Minerals Division, Annual Meeting of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (2007)

Gordon Atwater Best Poster Award (with Hongliu Zeng) - GCAGS/GCSSEPM Convention (2007)

Co-Author, Second Place, Thomas A. Philpott Excellence of Presentation Award - Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies (2007)

Honorary Life Member Award - Permian Basin Section, SEPM (2007)

A. I. Levorsen Memorial Award - Southwest Section, American Association of Petroleum Geologists (2006)

Third Place, Gordon I. Atwater Best Poster Award - Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies (2004)

Third Place, Gordon I. Atwater Best Poster Award - Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies (2003)

Second Place, Gordon I. Atwater Best Poster Award - Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies (2003)

Wallace E. Pratt Memorial Award for Best Paper in the AAPG Bulletin - American Association of Petroleum Geologists Annual Convention (2001)

Second Place, Thomas A. Philpott Excellence in Presentation - Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies (2001)

Dean A. McGee International Distinguished Lecturer - American Association of Petroleum Geologists (1999)

Honorary Research Fellow - School of Geological Science, Kingston University, Kingston upon Thames, Surrey, UK (1997 - 2001)

SEPM Excellence of Poster Presentation, Honorable Mention - AAPG/SEPM Annual Meeting (1996)

Representative to Academy of Sciences, USSR - ARCO (1990)

SEPM Excellence of Presentation, Honorable Mention - AAPG/SEPM Annual Meeting, San Francisco (1990)

SEPM Excellence of Poster Presentation, Honorable Mention - AAPG/SEPM Annual Meeting (1990 - 1991)

SEPM Excellence of Poster Presentation Award - AAPG/SEPM Annual Meeting (1990 - 1991)

Technical Achievement Awards - ARCO (1984 - 1985)

SEPM Excellence of Presentation Award - AAPG/SEPM Annual Meeting, Calgary (1982)

Co-Convenor, American Association of Petroleum Geologists Hedberg Conference (2004)

President-Elect, Gulf Coast Section--Society of Economic Paleontologists and Mineralogists (2003)

Session Co-Chairman, American Association of Petroleum Geologists (2002)

Chairman, Contribution Committee, Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies (2002)

Member, Editorial Board, American Association of Petroleum Geologists (2002)

Member, Promotions Advisory Committee, Bureau of Economic Geology (2002)

Session Co-Chairman, Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies (2002)

Secretary, Foundation Committee, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (2001)

Alternate Delegate, representing Austin Geological Society, American Association of Petroleum Geologists (2001)

Organizer and Co-Chair, American Association of Petroleum Geologists/Society of Economic Paleontologists and Mineralogists (1999)

Initiator, organizer, and co-chair, Kingston University (1998)

Member, Research Committee, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1997)

Member, Nomination Committee, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1997)

Liaison, Research Committee, American Association of Petroleum Geologists (1996)

Liaison, Research Committee, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1996)

Session Chair, American Association of Petroleum Geologists (1996)

Member, Policy Committee, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1995 - 1997)

Organizer, AAPG/AMGP (1994)

Member, Research Committee, American Association of Petroleum Geologists (1993)

Member, New Programs Committee, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1991 - 1993)

Organizer and Co-Chair, (1990)

Liaison, Research Committee, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1987 - 1990)

Liaison, Research Committee, American Association of Petroleum Geologists (1987 - 1990)

Member, Research Committee, American Association of Petroleum Geologists (1987 - 1990)

Treasurer, Mid-Continent Section, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1987 - 1989)

Member, Research Committee, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1986 - 1990)

Member, Gulf Coast Section, Grant Review Board, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1984 - 1987)

Member, Ad Hoc Committee, Founding Committee of the Mid-Continent Section, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1982 - 1983)

Chairman, Carbonate Rock Slide-Set Committee, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1981 - 1985)

Chairman, Carbonate Rock Sub-Committee, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1981)

Co-Chair, Carbonate Rock Sub-Committee, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1980)

Treasurer, Austin Geological Society (1979 - 1980)

Member, Sandstone Diagenesis Subcommittee, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1979)

Secretary, Austin Geological Society (1978 - 1979)

Member, Carbonate Rock Subcommittee, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geologists) (1975)

Graduate Students

Tingwei (Lucy) Ko, Ph.D., expected 2016 (Supervisor)
Source Rock Characterization Geochemistry (Organic, Biomarker, Gas Isotope) Mudrock Characterization Petrography, SEM

Stephanie Wood, M.S., expected 2013 (Supervisor)

Christopher K Hendrix (Supervisor)


Understanding the origin and sequence stratigraphy of growth-faulted, intraslope subbasins: examples from the South Texas Oligocene Frio Formation, invited talk presented at the Texas A&M ConocoPhillips Lecture Series, College Station, Texas (2005)

A multiple origin approach to understanding the development of breccias and fractures in Ordovician carbonate reservoirs, invited talk presented at the Texas A&M ConocoPhillips Lecture Series, College Station, Texas (2005)

Revisiting the importance of secondary dissolution pores in Tertiary sandstones along the Texas Gulf Coast, invited talk presented to Corpus Christi Geological Society & Coastal Bend Geophysical Society, Corpus Christi, Texas (2005)

Three-dimensional architecture of a coalesced, collapsed paleocave system in the lower Ordovician Ellenburger Group, Central Texas, luncheon talk presented to Dallas Geological Society, Dallas, Texas (2005)

Regional controls on reservoir quality in shallow-buried, lower Tertiary sandstones along the Texas Gulf Coast, presented at Brigham Oil and Gas Luncheon Seminar, Austin, Texas (2004)

Approaches to reservir quality prediction, presented at Brigham Oil and Gas Luncheon Seminar, Austin, Texas (2004)

Understanding growth-faulted, intraslope subbasins and associated reservoir targets by applying sequence stratigraphic principles: examples from the South Texas Oligocene Frio Formation, presented to the Department of Geological Sciences, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas (2004)

Large scale fracturing and breccia development associated with paleocave systems and associated suprastratal deformation, poster presented at AAPG Hedberg Conference, Austin, Texas (2004)

Regional controls on reservoir quality in shallow buried lower Tertiary sandstones along the Texas Gulf Coast, presented to Pioneer Oil Company, Dallas, Texas (2004)

Approaches to reservoir quality prediction, presented to Pioneer Oil Company, Dallas, Texas (2004)

Understanding growth-faulted, intraslope subbasins and associated reservoir targets by applying sequence stratigraphic principles: examples from the South Texas Oligocene Frio Formation, presented at the Houston Geological Society North American Explorations dinner meeting, Houston, Texas (2004)

Project STARR, presented at the Houston Geological Society North American Explorations dinner meeting, Houston, Texas (2004)

Approaches to reservoir quality prediction, presented to Veritas DGS, Houston, Texas (2004)

Regional controls on reservoir quality in shallow buried lower Tertiary sandstones along the Texas Gulf Coast, presented to Veritas DGS, Houston, Texas (2004)

Understanding the origin and sequence stratigraphy of growth-faulted, intraslope subbasins: examples from the South Texas Oligocene Frio Formation, presented to San Antonio SIPES Chapter, San Antonio, Texas (2004)

Project STARR, presented to the San Antonio SIPES Chapter, San Antonio, Texas (2004)

A multiple origin approach to understanding the development of breccias and fractures in Ordovician carbonate reservoirs, presented at South Texas Geological Society meeting, San Antonio, Texas (2004)

Using sequence stratigraphic wireline-log analysis to develop stratigraphic architecture in growth-faulted basins: practical application to the South Texas offshore Frio section, presented at Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies Annual Convention, GCSSEPM Short Course #4 (with Frank Brown), San Antontio, Texas (2004)

Underexplored deep-gas potential in the Gulf of Mexico, presented at Meeting of the Texas PTTC Producers Advisory Group (PAG) and State of Texas Policy Makers, Austin, Texas (2003)

Origin of Ordovician brecciated and fractured reservoirs: paleocave, thermobaric, tectonic, or all the above?, presented at BEG Colloquium, Bureau of Economic Geology, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas (2003)

Origin of growth-faulted subbasins in South Texas and sequence stratigraphic analysis of associated sediment fill, presented at University of Oklahoma's Shell Oil Colloquium series, Norman, Oklahoma (2003)

Overview of breccia- and fracture-forming processes in Ordovician carbonates, presented at University of Oklahoma's Shell Oil Colloquium series, Norman, Oklahoma (2003)

Paleocave reservoirs: invited lecture, presented at the University of Mississippi, Oxford, Mississippi (2003)

Origin of Lower Ordovician Ellenburger Group brecciated and fractured reservoirs in West Texas: Paleocave, thermobaric, tectonic, or all the above?: invited lecture, presented at the University of Mississippi, Oxford, Mississippi (2003)

Paleocave reservoirs: origins, burial-depth modifications, spatial complexity, and reservoir implications, Southwest Section of AAPG annual full-day seminar, (2002)

Project Starr: State of Texas Advance Resource Recovery Program, presented to Deck and Derrick Club, Austin, Texas (2002)

Project Starr: State of Texas Advance Resource Recovery Program, presented to Texas Alliance of Energy Producers, Wichita Falls, Texas (2002)

Paleocave systems: origins, burial-depth modifications, and spatial complexity, presented to Edwards Aquifer Authority Technical Advisory Group, Austin, Texas (2001)

Characterizing the three-dimensional architecture of a coalesced, collapsed-paleocave system in the Lower Ordovician, Ellenburger Group, by integrating ground-penetrating radar, shallow-core, and outcrop data, presented to the Bureau of Economic Geology, Austin, Texas (2001)

Depositional and diagenetic framework of larger foraminiferal nummelite deposits, presented at University of Nevada at Reno, Reno, Nevada (2001)

Paleocave systems: origins, burial-depth modifications, and spatial complexity, and reservoir implications, presented to Nevada Petroleum Society, Reno, Nevada (2001)

Paleocave systems: origins, burial-depth modifications, and spatial complexity, presented at The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas (2000)

Depositional and diagenetic framework for exploration in larger foraminiferal nummulite deposits, lower Eocene Metlaoui Group, offshore Tunisia, Kingston University, London, (1998)

Paleocave carbonate reservoirs: origins, burial-depth modifications, spatial complexity, and reservoir implications, Dallas Geological Society, (1998)

Paleocave carbonate reservoirs: origins, burial-depth modifications, spatial complexity, and reservoir implications, The University of Texas at Dallas, (1998)

Presenter, One-Day Short Course, Exploration of Paleocave Reservoirs, Permian Basin Graduate Center, (1996)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on carbonate geology for engineers, ARCO, (1995)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on carbonate geology for engineers, ARCO, (1993)

Carbonate seismic sequence stratigraphy short course, Society of Economic Geophysicists Annual Meeting, (1992)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on carbonate geology for engineers, ARCO, (1991)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on Reservoir Quality Prediction in Sandstones and Carbonates, ARCO, (1990)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on carbonate sequence stratigraphy, ARCO, (1989)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on Reservoir Quality Prediction in Sandstones and Carbonates, ARCO, (1989)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on carbonate sequence stratigraphy, ARCO, (1988)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on Reservoir Quality Prediction in Sandstones and Carbonates, ARCO, (1988)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on carbonate sequence stratigraphy, ARCO, (1987)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on Reservoir Quality Prediction in Sandstones and Carbonates, ARCO, (1987)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on Carbonate Exploration and Production, ARCO, (1986)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on Reservoir Quality Prediction in Sandstones and Carbonates, ARCO, (1986)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on Carbonate Exploration and Production, ARCO, (1985)

AAPG Carbonate Exploration School. Served as an instructor, (1985)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on Reservoir Quality Prediction in Sandstones and Carbonates, ARCO, (1985)

Organizer and co-teacher, Course on Carbonate Exploration and Production, ARCO, (1984)

AAPG Carbonate Exploration School. Served as an instructor, (1984)

AAPG Carbonate Exploration School. Served as an instructor, (1983)

AAPG Carbonate Exploration School. Served as an instructor, (1982)

AAPG Carbonate Exploration School. Served as an instructor, (1981)

AAPG Carbonate Exploration School. Served as an instructor, (1980)

Carbonate depositional systems graduate course, The University of Texas at Austin, (1980)

AAPG Carbonate Exploration School. Served as an instructor, (1979)