Surat and Galilee basins

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Map of the Surat-Galilee Project area showing location of newly acquired airborne geophysical data.

High-resolution seismic reflection data in the Surat and Galilee geological basins, Queensland, suggests Neogene faults are present in both basins, and that these structural features may compartmentalise the groundwater systems and provide potential pathways for inter-aquifer leakage. This has implications for how water resources are developed and managed. However, given the high costs of high-resolution seismic reflection data collection, mapping these features in detail can be cost-prohibitive. Airborne electromagnetics (AEM) provides a potential cost-effective alternative to map near-surface (<100-200 m) Neogene faults. Lower per-kilometer costs enable industries, government and academia to collect more data and there better understand aquifer hydrodynamics and structural compartmentalisation of sedimentary basins.

The Surat-Galilee Project acquired 4,477 line-kilometre of AEM data across the Surat and Galilee geological basins (see Figure 1) in 2017. The survey was designed to acquire data either coincident or proximal to existing seismic reflection surveys for ease of comparison between the two datasets. Once released, this data will therefore enable industries, government, and academia to assess the suitability of AEM for detecting near-surface structural features in the area in comparison with seismic data.


The Project will deliver the new 4,477 line-kilometre Airborne electromagnetic (AEM) and magnetic data in June 2020.