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The Search For Submarine Fan Complexes In The Upper Cretaceous, Browse Basin, Northwest Shelf, Australia.

Dunbar, Alex

Honours Degree, 2000

University of Adelaide


Submarine fan complexes represent a significant proportion of the future exploration targets in the continental margins of Australia, especially the North West Shelf. This study entails a search for submarine fans in the Cenomanian to Campanian terrigenous clastic successions of the central Caswell sub-basin in the Browse Basin of the North West Shelf.

Interpretation of more than 6000 line kilometres of 2D seismic and integration of wireline log, cuttings and biostratigraphic data from six wells (Caswell 2, Bassett 1A, Yampi 2, Brewster 1A, Buccaneer 1 and Echuca Shoals 1) resulted in the recognition of five unconformity-bounded packages.

Two submarine fan complexes were identified and mapped within Package 5. They were recognised by distinctive mounded, sheet and concave-up seismic facies and through lithological information supplied by intersecting wells Caswell 2 and Bassett 1A.

Upper and lower submarine fan facies were identified, including identification of a channel-levee-overbank complex in the upper fan, and sand-prone sheet (lobe) and overlapping mounded deposits in the lower fan.

Using the sequence stratigraphic framework and extrapolating mapped depo-systems to unmapped regions, it is predicted that a submarine fan complex may exist 50-70 kilometres north of Caswell 2. This could represent an area for future exploration.

Australian School of Petroleum



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