Date: 08/08 - 25/08 2023. 

Location: School of Geography, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, McCoy Building, University of Melbourne, Parkville Campus.

Time, Date, Location of First Meeting: tba

Contact hours: Total 80 contact hours, lectures, practical and field excursion 

Basin Analysis, by Allen P.A. & Allen J.R. 2005/2013

Subject Overview: 

This subject will show how to assess sedimentary basins for their resource potential, particularly those resources dependent upon porosity and permeability, such as geothermal energy, water, hydrocarbons and gas/CO2-storage. The skills taught come primarily from the petroleum industry, including seismic interpretation, borehole analysis, core-logging and temperature measurement, but are applied to assess all resources. Students will assess the ESE (economic, social and environmental) value of the resources. Students will each present and promote a farm-out investment opportunity and will be given an investment portfolio. Each student will be required to rank the opportunities against their portfolio. Practically, this will be achieved by comparing and contrasting eastern Australia basins of different types; the Palaeozoic Drummond Basin in Queensland, and the Mesozoic-Tertiary Gippsland-Otway Basins in Victoria. The key assignment will be to analyse the origin, fill, sediment properties and tectonic history of each basin and to assess its resource potential. The subject will include a one-day field excursion to Peninsula Hot Springs geothermal bathing and spa resort on the Mornington Peninsula.

The Intrroductory lecture can be found at the following link


Learning Outcomes:

  • Develop an understanding of the nature and origin of sedimentary basins
  • Interpret the basin fill and sedimentary environments from core and recorded data
  • Evaluate hydrocarbon, CO2 storage, water, geothermal and mineral resources
  • Learn exploration techniques and strategy
  • Interpret seismic data, electric logs and geohistory curves to define potential resources

Generic Skills:

  • Undertake rigorous and independent thinking;
  • Adopt a problem-solving approach to new and unfamiliar tasks;
  • Develop high-level written report and/or oral presentation skills;
  • Interrogate, synthesise and interpret the published literature;
  • Work as part of a team.

    For more information see the University of Melbourne handbook entry (

    Recommended background knowledge

    A knowledge of third-year geology is strongly recommended.


    Core logging and interpretation practical (15%), geochemical analyses and geohistory practical (15%), geothermal practical (15%), a seismic interpretation practical (15%), assignment: Investment portfolio assessment (10%) , Assignment: Gippsland-Otway-Drummond basins resource potential (30%)  

    Cost: PESA members $890; non PESA members $1110; no additional cost for students

    To make the payment for this course, please click here.

    • Teachers: Kevin Hill, Andy Mills, Richard Lovell, Graeme Beardsmore