Project activity South Nicholson National Drilling Initiative

The South Nicholson National Drilling Initiative (NDI) Carrara 1 provides unique insights into the energy and mineral resource potential of this frontier region. 

The NDI Carrara 1 stratigraphic drill hole was completed in late 2020, as a collaboration between Geoscience Australia, the Northern Territory Geological Survey (NTGS) and the MinEx CRC. NDI Carrara 1 is the first drill hole to intersect the as yet undifferentiated Proterozoic rocks of the newly discovered Carrara Sub-basin. NDI Carrara 1 is located on the western flanks of the Carrara Sub-basin on the South Nicholson seismic line (17GA-SN1), reaching a total depth of 1,751 m, intersecting ca. 630 m of Cambrian Georgina Basin overlying ca. 1,100 m of Proterozoic carbonates, black shales and minor siliciclastics.

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Location of the NDI Carrara 1 stratigraphic drill hole and South Nicholson (L210) and Barkly (L212) seismic survey lines across the South Nicholson region

What we are doing

We are undertaking a range of investigations into the lithology, stratigraphy and geotechnical properties of NDI Carrara 1 based on wireline data, together with a range of analyses of over 400 physical samples distributed through the entire core. These analyses include geochronology, isotope studies, mineralogy, inorganic and organic geochemistry, petrophysics, geomechanics, thermal maturity, and petroleum systems investigations.


During this project activity, Geoscience Australia and partners have collected: