Upper Darling Floodplain SkyTEM airborne EM survey

Geoscience Australia is pleased to announce the completion of the acquisition for the Upper Darling Floodplain airborne electromagnetic (AEM) survey, in 2022 (Figure 3). Covering an area almost half the size of Tasmania with 25,000 line km of high-resolution data, the survey results will provide unprecedented detail of the top 300 m of ground for groundwater and salinity mapping investigations across the floodplain. Data from the survey will be released in late August 2022.

The survey was flown by SkyTEM Australia Pty Ltd using their helicopter-based system. The program was acquired without safety incidences or significant stakeholder engagement issues over a 3-month period.

upper darling floodplain airborne em survey

Characterization and Risk Assessment for New Pipeline Construction


The record rainfall and severe flooding in South East Queensland in early 2011 reaped havoc and destruction and affected hundreds of thousands of people. Business and industry suffered as vital infrastructure projects experienced significant delays. The Queensland Curtis LNG Project was facing increasing pressure to meet a tight deadline to deliver a characterization of the corridor.


The SkyTEM sensor was flown along the planned pipeline route and preliminary results were delivered to the engineering team within 48 hours of acquisition.


SkyTEM high resolution data identified areas of shallow bedrock that was critical information for planning. The figure below shows areas interpreted as high risk for near surface bedrock (red) while areas in green are low risk. This information was used to prioritize priority construction areas.


While bore holes give accurate point source information, interpolation between samples is required to create an approximate image. Ground geophysics can be time consuming or impossible in some areas. The SkyTEM system was able to accurately characterize the route and quickly deliver data crucial to completion of the project.