From 1 - 10 / 38
  • This report presents key results from hydrogeological investigations in the Tennant Creek region, completed as part of Exploring for the Future (EFTF)—an eight year, $225 million Australian Government funded geoscience data and information acquisition program focused on better understanding the potential mineral, energy and groundwater resources across Australia. The EFTF Southern Stuart Corridor (SSC) Project area is located in the Northern Territory and extends in a north–south corridor from Tennant Creek to Alice Springs, encompassing four water control districts and a number of remote communities. Water allocation planning and agricultural expansion in the SSC is limited by a paucity of data and information regarding the volume and extent of groundwater resources and groundwater systems more generally. Geoscience Australia, in partnership with the Northern Territory Department of Environment and Natural Resources and Power and Water Corporation, undertook an extensive program of hydrogeological investigations in the SSC Project area between 2017 and 2019. Data acquisition included; helicopter airborne electromagnetic (AEM) and magnetic data; water bore drilling; ground-based and downhole geophysical data for mapping water content and defining geological formations; hydrochemistry for characterising groundwater systems; and landscape assessment to identify potential managed aquifer recharge (MAR) targets. This report focuses on the Tennant Creek region—part of the Barkly region of the Northern Territory. Investigations in this region utilised existing geological and geophysical data and information, which were applied in the interpretation and integration of AEM and ground-based geophysical data, as well as existing and newly acquired groundwater hydrochemical and isotope data. The AEM and borehole lithological data reveal the highly weathered (decomposed) nature of the geology, which is reflected in the hydrochemistry. These data offer revised parameters, such as lower bulk electrical conductivity values and increased potential aquifer volumes, for improved modelling of local groundwater systems. In many instances the groundwater is shown to be young and of relatively good quality (salinity generally <1000 mg/L total dissolved solids), with evidence that parts of the system are rapidly recharged by large rainfall events. The exception to this is in the Wiso Basin to the west of Tennant Creek. Here lower quality groundwater occurs extensively in the upper 100 m below ground level, but this may sit above potentially potable groundwater and that possibility should be investigated further. Faults are demonstrated to have significantly influenced the occurrence and distribution of weathered rocks and of groundwater, with implications for groundwater storage and movement. Previously unrecognised faults in the existing borefield areas should be investigated for their potential role in compartmentalising groundwater. Additionally a previously unrecognised sub-basin proximal to Tennant Creek may have potential as a groundwater resource or a target for MAR. This study has improved understanding of the quantity and character of existing groundwater resources in the region and identified a managed aquifer recharge target and potential new groundwater resources. The outcomes of the study support informed water management decisions and improved water security for communities; providing a basis for future economic investment and protection of environmental and cultural values in the Tennant Creek and broader Barkly region. Data and information related to the project are summarised in the conclusions of this report and are accessible via the EFTF portal (https://portal.ga.gov.au/).

  • This flythrough video highlights deep and mesophotic seabed environments within the Coral Sea Marine Park, offshore northeastern Australia. The mesophotic zone, commonly referred to as the ‘twilight zone’ represents the depth range below the brightly lit shallow waters down to the maximum depth that sunlight can penetrate for photosynthesis to occur (~ 30 to 150 meters beneath the sea surface). The featured Malay and North Flinders Reefs represent mid-ocean platform reefs and Cairns Seamount hosts a thriving coral reef community atop what is likely an extinct volcanic cone. These locations represent a range of benthic communities, which vary with depth and substrate type. Soft-sediments (sands, muds and oozes) dominate the deep seafloor, with evidence of water currents that produce bedforms showing active sediment transport at these depths. The walls and flanks of the platform reefs are very steep, with evidence of slope failure where rocky head walls have collapsed and deposited large blocks and boulders on the seafloor, which provide important habitat for sessile and mobile invertebrates including soft corals and sponges as well as cryptic octopus. Typical mesophotic habitats included vast Halimeda algal meadows and rhodolith beds interspersed with soft corals and sponges on soft-sediment. Hard substrates were typically colonised by plate and encrusting hard Scleractinian corals (e.g. Leptoseris and Montipora species), sponges and ascidians. Many large black corals (Antipatharia) and gorgonians (Octocorallia) also featured, with several black coral and carnivorous sponge observations representing new species. The reef community atop Cairns Seamount was highly diverse and included many demersal and pelagic fish species. A high abundance and diversity of gelatinous zooplankton were observed in the deep waters between reefs in the Coral Sea, with several new range extensions recorded. Bathymetry data and seafloor imagery for this flythrough were collected on RV Falkor, owned and operated by the Schmidt Ocean Institute (SOI), during surveys FK200830 and FK200902 in August and October 2020. These surveys were led by Geoscience Australia and James Cook University. Collaborative research partners included the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, The University of Tokyo, Queensland University of Technology, Queensland Museum, The University of Sydney, University of Tasmania and the University of Wollongong.

  • This ESRI map (web) service contains geospatial seabed morphology and geomorphology information for Cairns Seamount within the Coral Sea Marine Park and are intended for use by marine park managers, regulators, the general public and other stakeholders. This web service uses the data product published in McNeil et al. (2023); eCat Record 147998.

  • This OGC Web Feature Service (WFS) contains geospatial seabed morphology and geomorphology information for the Beagle Marine Park (South-east Marine Parks Network) and is intended for use by marine park managers, regulators and other stakeholders. This web service uses the data product published in Nanson et al. (2023); eCat Record 147976.

  • This OGC Web Feature Service (WFS) contains seabed morphology and geomorphology information for a subset area of Zeehan Marine Park (South-east Marine Parks Network) and is intended for use by marine park managers, regulators and other stakeholders. This web service uses the data product published in McNeil et al. (2023); eCat Record 148620.

  • This flythrough highlights canyon environments within the Gascoyne Marine Park offshore northwestern Australia. The Cape Range Canyon is a relatively narrow, linear canyon that initiates on the continental slope, but is connected to the shelf via a narrow channel. The walls of the canyon are steep and reveal a history of slumping and retrogressive failure, that have broadened the canyon over time. The floor contains a series of deep plunge pools, indicative of the action of sediment-laden turbidity currents in further eroding this canyon. Epibenthos within the canyons was relatively sparse and likely regulated by disturbance associated with sedimentation in the canyons. Rock overhangs often supported the highest densities of benthic suspension feeders, including glass sponges, octocorals, and ascidians. Bathymetry data and seafloor imagery for this flythrough was collected by the Schmidt Ocean Institute during survey FK200308. Funding was provided by Schmidt Ocean Institute, Geoscience Australia, the Australian Government’s National Environmental Science Program (NESP) Marine Biodiversity Hub, the Director of National Parks, and the Foundation for the WA Museum through a Woodside Marine Biodiversity Grant.

  • The East Antarctic slope on the Sabrina margin has been shaped by diverse processes related to repeated glaciation. Differences in slope along this margin have driven variations in sedimentation that explain the gully morphology. Areas of lower slope angles have led to rapid sediment deposition during glacial expansion to the shelf edge, and subsequent sediment failure. Gullies in these areas are typically extremely U-shaped, initiate well below the shelf break, are relatively straight and long, and have low incision depths. Areas of higher slope angles enhance the flow of erosive turbidity currents during glaciations associated with the release of sediment-laden basal meltwaters. The meltwater flows create gullies that typically initiate at or near the shelf break, are V-shaped in profiles, have high sinuosity, deep incision depths and a relatively short down slope extent. The short down slope extent reflects a reduced sediment load associated with increased seawater entrainment as the slope becomes more concave in profile. These differences in gully morphology have important habitat implications, associated with differences in the structure and beta-diversity of the seafloor communities. This upper slope region also supports seafloor communities that are distinct from those on the adjacent shelf, highlighting the uniqueness of this environment for biodiversity. <b>Citation:</b> A.L. Post, P.E. O'Brien, S. Edwards, A.G. Carroll, K. Malakoff, L.K. Armand, Upper slope processes and seafloor ecosystems on the Sabrina continental slope, East Antarctica, <i>Marine Geology</i>, Volume 422, 2020, 106091, ISSN 0025-3227, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.margeo.2019.106091.

  • This unique, interactive map shows how crowdsourced photographs can help to highlight some of Australia's great geological features. The interactive map, built using the ESRI Storymap functionality, combines geolocation information with superb imagery gathered by amateur and professional photographers. The map features the best 68 images selected from over 300 entries in the 2015 Top GeoShot photographic competition.

  • Publicly available bathymetry and geophysical data has been used to map geomorphic features of the Antarctic continental margin and adjoining ocean basins at scales of 1:1-2 million. The key bathymetry datasets used were GEBCO08 and ETOPO2 satellite bathymetry (Smith & Sandwell 1997), in addition to seismic lines in key areas. Twenty-seven geomorphic units were identified based on interpretation of the seafloor bathymetry with polygons digitised by hand in ArcGIS. Seafloor features were classified largely based on the International Hydrographic Organisation (2001) classification of undersea features, and expanded to include additional features, including those likely to have specific substrate types and influence on oceanography. This approach improves the technique as a predictor of physical conditions that may influence seafloor communities. The geomorphic map has been used for developing a benthic bioregionalisation and for developing a representative system of Marine Protected Areas for East Antarctica. Slight modifications have been made since original publication in O'Brien et al. 2009 and Post et al. 2014. These include: - updating of some feature names; - combining "wave affected banks" with "shelf banks" - Combining "coastal terrance" with "island coastal terrane" as "Coastal/Shelf Terrane" - replacing canyon vectors with polygons by using a buffer around the vectors Further details of the original mapping can be found in: O'Brien, P.E., Post, A.L., Romeyn, R., 2009. Antarctic-wide geomorphology as an aid to habitat mapping and locating Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems, Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems Workshop, Paper WS-VME-09/10. CCAMLR, La Jolla, California, USA. Post, A.L., Meijers, A.J.S., Fraser, A.D., Meiners, K.M., Ayers, J., Bindoff, N.L., Griffiths, H.J., Van de Putte, A.P., O'Brien, P.E., Swadling, K.M., Raymond, B., 2014. Chapter 14. Environmental Setting, In: De Broyer, C., Koubbi, P., Griffiths, H.J., Raymond, B., d'Udekem d'Acoz, C., et al. (Eds.), Biogeographic Atlas of the Southern Ocean. Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research, Cambridge, pp. 46-64.

  • This flythrough shows the seafloor bathymetry, cores and canyon names for the Sabrina slope region of East Antarctica. Indigenous names for canyons were proposed following consultation with the Noongar people in Western Australia, the region of Western Australia that was formerly conjugate to the Sabrina margin. Canyon names are as follows: 1. Boongorang Canyon (Blowing in the wind) 2. Manang Canyon (Pool of Water Canyon) 3. Maadjit Canyon (Water Serpent Canyon) 4. Jeffrey Canyon (after Shirley Jeffrey, diatom researcher) 5. Morka Canyon (Winter Canyon) 6. Minang-a Canyon (Whale Canyon)