Aircraft gathers water data


The airborne electromagnetic survey aircraft to be used in Western Australia

Image courtesy of
Fugro Airborne Surveys

An aerial survey being carried out in southwest Western Australia will provide new scientific information for landholders, natural resource managers, researchers and Government agencies about the region's groundwater resources.

The airborne electromagnetic survey is being carried out by Geoscience Australia on behalf of the Western Australian Department of Water to collect approximately 8600 line kilometres of new data at a nominal flying height of 120 metres above ground level.

The survey aircraft will obtain the data in areas around Albany and Esperance as well as the Swan coastal plain east of Cape Naturaliste and the Scott coastal plains east of Cape Leeuwin.

The survey has received funding from the Western Australian Government's Royalties for Regions program as part of a four year initiative to assess, plan and investigate regional water availability in Western Australia.

The aircraft will begin flying around Esperance in late March, with completion over the Swan coastal plain in mid-May.

The survey will provide geoscientists and others with data to improve the understanding of seawater intrusion into fresh water aquifers as well as the sub-surface geology in four separate locations extending over a total area of more than 4000 square kilometres.

As well as seawater intrusion, the survey will provide important context for a range of land-use investigations, including groundwater and hydrogeology.

Further information about the survey is available in a Western Australian Department of Water fact sheet.