Deep-dive projects Officer–Musgrave
This project is investigating the groundwater and energy potential of the Officer Basin and neighbouring Musgrave Province near the junction of South Australia, Western Australia and the Northern Territory.
The central deserts of Australia represent a vast tract of Australia’s arid interior spanning Western Australia, South Australia and the Northern Territory. Recent studies in the region revealed pockets of potable groundwater in ancient, buried river valleys (palaeovalleys).
The Officer–Musgrave project is establishing the extent and characteristics of these palaeovalleys, to enable sustainable management of the groundwater resources. This potential new source of water could be transformative for communities in the region, which currently rely on unpredictable, hard-rock aquifers.
Geoscience Australia is providing new data to improve the geological knowledge of the Officer Basin and its geological constraints. The project is also filling knowledge gaps in the energy potential of this under-explored region through reanalysis of new and legacy pre-competitive geoscience datasets.
What we are doing
The project incorporates a number of study areas and proposed activities, including:
Exploring for the Future in the Officer Musgrave region
Carr, L. K., Henson, P., Wang, L., Bailey, A., Fomin, T., Boreham, C., Edwards, D., Southby, C., Symington, N., Smith, M., Halas, L., Jones, T. (2022)
Neoproterozoic and Cambrian chemostratigraphic mega-sequences of the Officer basin; a regional framework to assist petroleum and mineral exploration
Edwards, D., Munday, S., Wang, L., Riley, D., Khider, K. (2022)
Geomechanical rock properties of the Officer Basin
Bailey, A., Wang, L., Dewhurst, D., Anderson, J., Carr, L.K. and Henson, P. The APPEA Journal (May 2022)
Geoscience Knowledge Sharing
Important community information
All data produced by Geoscience Australia, including the data from this project, will be made publicly available. We will work with communities to return the data in a useful format, through the Geoscience Knowledge Sharing project.
Acquisition activities are not being undertaken on behalf of any exploration companies. All Geoscience Australia staff and contractors will comply with Geoscience Australia’s COVID-19 protocols, available upon request.
The current Exploring for the Future program (2020–24) focuses on 8 interrelated projects, united in growing our understanding of Australia's geology.
Three deep-dive projects in potentially resource-rich corridors identified in the east and west of Australia: Darling–Curnamona–Delamerian, Officer–Musgrave and Barkly–Isa–Georgetown projects.
Three national projects with a focus on southern Australia: Australia’s Resources Framework, National Groundwater Systems and Australia’s Future Energy Resources projects.
Two program support projects: Enhanced Data Delivery and Geoscience Knowledge Sharing projects.