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PESA ACT Technical Seminar: Sediment provenance of Mungaroo Delta

Friday, October 13 @ 12:30 - 13:30

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Guest Speaker: Sara Morón


Sara Morón is a geoscientist with more than 7 years of experience in industry and academia. Sara holds a PhD in Petroleum Geology from the University of Adelaide and a M.Sc. in Geology from the University of Minnesota, USA. Sara combines numerical modelling, geochemical and field data to better understand fluvio-deltaic systems and to provide insights to the petroleum industry. Sara had worked in multiple interdisciplinary projects in Australia and the Americas, including the understanding of the tectono-stratigraphic evolution and closure of the Panama Isthmus. Sara is currently a Research Fellow at the University of Melbourne investigating the sediment provenance and the mechanisms that formed the Triassic Mungaroo delta in the North West Shelf. She is part of the Basin Genesis Hub, a multidisciplinary project funded by the Australian Research Council and Industry.


The fluvio-deltaic Triassic Mungaroo Formation, North West Shelf of Australia, hosts vast resources of hydrocarbons, however its sediment provenance remains controversial. Better understanding of sediment provenance and dispersal has implications for the characterization of reservoir quality and potential correlation between known reservoirs and reservoirs yet to be discovered.

To better fingerprint the sediment sources of the major peaks in the zircon age distribution of the Mungaroo Formation we compared new Hf isotopic data from previously dated detrital zircons from the Mungaroo Formation with Hf isotopic published data from i) Paleozoic and Early Mesozoic sedimentary units from Western Australia, the Lhasa terrain and Antarctica and ii) crystalline rocks from Australia and the Lhasa terrain.

Results show: i) the Mesoproterozoic (1000-1250 Ma) peak has a similar age and Hf values as the zircons extracted from the Musgrave Province and the Albany-Fraser Orogen, ii) the Neoproterozoic-Cambrian (500-700 Ma) peak can be ascribed to East Antarctic sources and probably the Lhasa terrain the iii) Triassic peak (~213Ma) has similar age and Hf isotopic values as zircons from peraluminous granites from the Lhasa terrain and has the same age as a dated rhyolite from the Wombat Plateau. Comparison with Paleozoic sediments from the Canning, Officer and Amadeus basins and the Lhasa terrain show a strikingly similar age spectra and Hf isotopic signal, thus we argue that this fluvial system was a long-lived supercontinental scale system, that seemed to have started at the Gamburtsev Mountain Range, transversed the Lambert graven (Antarctica) and continued along the Officer and Canning basins to finally debouch in the Northern Carnarvon basin. We conclude that this system reached its zenith in the Triassic as it deposited 4-6 km of sediment at its terminus, in the Mungaroo Delta.


RSVP: If you would like to join us for lunch, please RSVP to PESA-ACT@ga.gov.au, by COB Tues October 10 (for PESA members only).


Friday, October 13
12:30 - 13:30


Geoscience Australia, Harold Raggatt Theatre
Cnr Jerrabomberra Ave and Hindmarsh Drive, , Symonston, ACT 2609 Australia
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