Geoscience Australia - Product Database



Kenn Plateau

Entity ID: 34873 Compiled by: Burch, G. Year: 2003 Status: Informal

Last Revised: 2013

Rank: province Type: sedimentary Subtype: rift Location: QLD, CSIT Off-shore

Synonyms: NA Symbol: NA

Minimum age: Recent Age method: inferred, seismic interpretation

Maximum age: Cretaceous Age method: inferred, seismic interpretation

Summary: The Cretaceous to Recent Kenn Plateau is a submerged continental block located approximately 450 km off the northeast Australian coast in water depths of 150 m to 4000 m.

Area (square kilometres): 73500
State: QLD
Only a small southern portion of the Kenn Plateau
State: CSIT
Minimum present water depth (m): 150
Maximum present water depth (m): 4000
Main rock types: siliciclastic sediments and sedimentary rocks
Main depositional environment: marine
Minimum sediment thickness (m): 0
Maximum sediment thickness (m): 2000
Estimate from sparse seismic data
Present crustal setting: continental
Country: AUS
Country: FRA
Nouvelle Cadedonie

Parent: No data

Child Provinces: No data

Relationships: None

Constituent units:

Events: No data

Mineral Deposits: No data

Key Reference: Exon, N. The Kenn Plateau off the Queensland: surface sediments, geology, tectonics and petroleum potential, RV Franklin - Expression of Interest, , (Refid:12663)

Comments: No data

Overview: The Kenn Plateau is a large, relatively poorly understood submerged continental block, which rifted from northeastern Australia 63 to 52 million years ago. It is believed to contain Cretaceous and younger rift basins, and lies in a critical position between seafloor-spreading terrains to the south, and ridge propagation and other terrains to the north. The Kenn Plateau is separated from the Marion Plateau to the west by the north-trending bathymetric Cato Trough (about 3000 m deep). The total area of the Kenn Plateau is about 73,500 square km, of which about 40,000 square km lies in less than 2000 m of water. The plateau is shallowest along its northwestern margin and generally deepens to the southeast. The Kenn Reef and Bird and Cato Islands lie along the western margin and are presumably volcanic in origin, as they appear to form a northerly extension of the Tasmantid Chain of volcanic seamounts. A large portion of the Kenn Plateau is in deep water where modern sedimentation processes are dominated by pelagic and hemipelagic deposition. The Kenn Plateau is interpreted to be underlain by stretched and intruded Palaeozoic basement, and contains rift structures that are presumably related to the final Paleocene break-up of the northeastern Australian margin. The rift fill on the plateau are interpreted as siliciclastic sediments of Cretaceous and Palaeogene age, draped by post-rift sediments of Eocene and younger age. While the age of the basinal succession and resource potential of the rifted depocentres on the Kenn Plateau remains speculative, tectonic reconstructions suggest former juxtaposition to the Capricorn and Maryborough Basins to the west. The conjugate Maryborough Basin contains Cretaceous-age source rocks. The Kenn Plateau may therefore have some hydrocarbon potential.

Images: No data

Other media: No data

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This report was generated on Friday, May 25, 2018 6:56:07 PM EST.