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Water and mineral resources of Proterozoic rift-basins in Australia


This project addresses the fundamental tectonic and thermal processes involved in the development of basins' resources from water to mineral. It focusses on tectonic and thermal inheritances and how they control the development of these resources, and how they can be detected by modern exploration techniques using a multidisciplinary approach with a team of academic and industry experts with backgrounds in tectonics, surface processes and resource exploration. This project will deliver a new quantitative and integrated exploratory framework for the resource industry in Australia’s frontier sedimentary basins by integrating the latest advances in thermo-mechanical numerical, surface process, and geophysical modelling.


Associate Professor Patrice Rey, Dr Tristan Salles.

Research location

School of Geosciences

Program type



  1. How do inherited basement fault networks influence the development and subsequent inversion of basins under different boundary conditions?
  2. Under what conditions do basement-cover coupling and decoupling occur, and how does coupling influence basement structural inheritance, the architecture of basins and their subsequent inversion?
  3. What is the longevity of thermal anomalies related to intra-continental lithospheric extension under the hot geothermal conditions that would have prevailed in the Proterozoic and Phanerozoic lithosphere of North Australia?
  4. What role does mass transfer at the Earth’s surface play in the redistribution of deviatoric stresses within the lithosphere? To what extent does locking of pre-existing basement faults due to sediment loading control the migration of active deformation away from regions of thick sedimentary accumulations into adjacent regions?

Additional information

We will consider outstanding students with a background in geosciences. Aptitude for computer modelling is certainly an advantage but not a necessity. This project is supported by an ARC-Linkage project 2020-24

HDR Inherent Requirements

In addition to the academic requirements set out in the Science Postgraduate Handbook, you may be required to satisfy a number of inherent requirements to complete this degree. Example of inherent requirement may include:

  • Confidential disclosure and registration of a disability that may hinder your performance in your degree;
  • Confidential disclosure of a pre-existing or current medical condition that may hinder your performance in your degree (e.g. heart disease, pace-maker, significant immune suppression, diabetes, vertigo, etc.);
  • Ability to perform independently and/or with minimal supervision;
  • Ability to undertake certain physical tasks (e.g. heavy lifting);
  • Ability to undertake observatory, sensory and communication tasks;
  • Ability to spend time at remote sites (e.g. One Tree Island, Narrabri and Camden);
  • Ability to work in confined spaces or at heights;
  • Ability to operate heavy machinery (e.g. farming equipment);
  • Hold or acquire an Australian driver’s licence;
  • Hold a current scuba diving license;
  • Hold a current Working with Children Check;
  • Meet initial and ongoing immunisation requirements (e.g. Q-Fever, Vaccinia virus, Hepatitis, etc.)

You must consult with your nominated supervisor regarding any identified inherent requirements before completing your application.

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Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is 2838

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