Natural resources and mines minister Anthony Lynham has officially opened the expanded Exploration Data Centre in Zillmere, Brisbane, hosting Queensland’s largest rock sample library.
The $5 million expansion is hoped to create cheaper and faster mineral, petroleum, and coal exploration.
The centre was originally built in 1979 and currently stores core rock sample that would span more than 810km if arranged lengthways. It has samples from CSG wells, water bores, and 11,600 exploration holes collected over 100 years of exploration across the state.
Explorers pay a small fee to access a sample from the area they are looking into and have it assessed, with the centre analysing the mineral content.
The centre also provides digital geoscience data and company exploration reports to resource companies planning future exploration.
“The core samples and the low-cost, expert analysis done here are the lifeblood of an industry that has helped to develop our state, to fund our infrastructure, and continues to provide thousands of jobs,” Lynham said.
Member for Nudgee Leanne Linard said the expansion has doubled the centre’s capacity, providing storage for more than 3000 new pallets of core rock samples and cuttings.
“This facility has been a part of the local community since the late seventies, and following this expansion will help support the Queensland resource sector for years to come,” she said.
“The centre is also helping to kick-start the careers of the resource sector’s future workforce and drive innovation, by supporting teaching and research projects for academia, including the University of Queensland’s School of Earth Sciences.”