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The basin can be divided into the which comprises up to 15km of largely Mesozoic sedimentary rocks and the Southern Carnarvon Basin which contains up to 7km of largely Palaeozoic sedimentary rocks.The Northern Carnarvon Basin encompasses the Exmouth Plateau, Wombat Plateau (on the northern part of the Exmouth Plateau), Investigator Sub-basin, Rankin Platform, Exmouth Sub-basin, Barrow Sub-basin, Dampier Sub-basin, Beagle Sub-basin, Enderby Terrace, Peedamullah Shelf and the Lambert Shelf.Following a period of non-deposition during the Early Devonian, Devonian and Early Carboniferous sediments were deposited across a shallow marine shelf and an interior-sag basin. Marine conditions were terminated in the mid-Carboniferous by a major tectonic episode, the collision between Gondwanaland and Laurasia to form the super-continent Pangea. About 30 exploration wells have been drilled including just two offshore wells.Minor gas shows have been encountered in some wells but there are no discoveries to date.The basin was initiated as an epicratonic rift in the Late Ordovician-Early Silurian and rifting was accompanied by uplift of the Pilbara Block. Shallow marine to tidal flat conditions were established in the Late Silurian. The structural foundations of the northern Carnarvon Basin.
Source rock data is sparse, but indicates excellent gas-prone source rocks in the Early Permian and excellent/good oil-prone source rocks in the Early Ordovician, Late Devonian, Early Carboniferous and Late Permian. Style, timing and distribution of tectonic deformation across the Exmouth Plateau, northwest Australia, determined from stratal architecture and quantitative basin modelling. The stratigraphic correlation chart of the Northern Carnarvon Basin reflects the subsidence history of this basin. Proceedings of Petroleum Exploration Society of Australia Symposium, Perth, 97-114. It has been dominated by simple thermal sag following the creation of the Exmouth, Barrow, Dampier and Beagle Sub-basins during the Early to Middle Jurassic rifting event. A structural interpretation of the Gascoyne Platform, southern Carnarvon Basin, WA. Proceedings of the West Australian Basins Symposium, sponsored by the West Australian Branch of the Petroleum Exploration Society of Australia, Perth, August 30-September 2, 1998, edited by P. Most of the basin and the adjacent Pilbara Block were uplifted at this time. London: The Geological Society of London., 271-311. Renewed rifting in the Late Carboniferous to Early Permian activated the Wandagee, Kennedy Range and Darling Fault systems and initiated a second phase of deposition in the Merlinleigh, Byro and Bidgemia Sub-basins. Lower Palaeozoic correlations and thermal maturity, Carnarvon Basin, WA. Proceedings of the West Australian Basins Symposium, sponsored by the West Australian Branch of the Petroleum Exploration Society of Australia, Perth, August 30-September 2, 1998, edited by P.