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New rock drill core library opens

The South Australia Drill Core Reference Library, located in Tonsley, will consolidate more than 7.5 million metres of drill core material currently held in four different locations across the state. The drill core samples were collected over a period of 130 years from various regions within SA.

According to the South Australian Chamber of Mines and Energy (SACOME), the majority of samples were held at a facility in Glenside, which had exceeded capacity. However, the new library will have the capacity for more than 20 years of material.

The drill core reference library features a drill core viewing area, conference and education rooms, and facilities that allow scientists to gain a 3D view of geology and mineral deposits beneath the earth’s surface. The facility will also provide direct access to SA’s library of geoscience information.

New library benefits

During a celebration of the facility’s completion on 17 February, SA Premier Jay Weatherill said, “[The library] is a one-stop shop for industry and geoscience explorers seeking easy access to the state’s inventory of drill cores generated from historical and recent exploration efforts, enabling companies to better target potential discoveries. It will boost exploration opportunities, unlocking the potential of SA’s resource wealth for many decades.”

State Minister for Mineral Resources and Energy Tom Koutsantonis explained that, given the depth of SA’s resources, drilling individual holes could be expensive. “This drill core library will enable explorers to highlight areas of real potential, and assist them in spending their exploration dollars more effectively,” he stated.

“This valuable collection, together with the state’s freely available exploration reports, data, information and latest modern drill core scanning systems, provide an important advantage in the ongoing search for mineral ore deposits and petroleum resources.”

SACOME chief executive Jason Kuchel also agreed the availability of an extensive drill core library was “immensely valuable”, especially as the majority of deposits were usually found by junior explorers with few resources.

Drill core samples are currently being transported to site from the four existing libraries, with the new facility expected to be fully operational and available for bookings from July this year.

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