A Reappraisal of the Petroleum Prospectivity of the Torquay Sub-basin, Offshore Southern Victoria, Australia
Barry G. West and Geoff Collins
The Torquay Sub-basin is located in the offshore part of the eastern Otway Basin, some 50km southwest of Melbourne. Three wells, all dry holes, were drilled between 1967 and 1992. Nerita-1 drilled in 1967 tested Eocene and Early Cretaceous reservoirs in a Miocene anticline. Snail-1 drilled in 1972 was not a valid structural test, and Wild Dog-1 drilled in 1992 tested Late Eocene sands in an Oligocene inversion faulted anticline sourced from Early Cretaceous coals. The area was assessed by previous explorers as lacking effective source. Work currently underway indicates these wells were dry because of lack of migration pathways to the Tertiary.
To the west, significant gas has been discovered in Late Cretaceous reservoirs offshore at Minerva-1 and LaBella-1, and onshore in wells in the Port Campbell Embayment. In the Bass Basin to the south, there have been consistent oil, condensate and gas shows. Geochemical analysis of the Early Cretaceous Eumeralla Formation and Casterton beds throughout the Otway Basin demonstrate they contain source rocks capable of generating both oil and gas.
Our study indicates that early Cretaceous sandstones with porosities better than 20%, may be present at depths of less than 2000m in the Torquay Sub-basin in tilted fault blocks. Source would be from down-dip lacustrine shales of the Casterton Beds. The general basement high area in which this play is developed is some 15km by 15km with up to 400m of relief.
AAPG Search and Discover Article #91019©1996 AAPG Convention and Exhibition 19-22 May 1996, San Diego, California