Skip to main content

Our facilities

The Department of Exploration Geophysics is co-located with CSIRO in the modern Australian Resource Research Centre (ARRC) building complex, Technology Park West, Kensington, Western Australia. We have a range of facilities available.

Access to our area is gained via the rear (Curtin) entrance in the ARRC building complex. The building is a secured facility so you will need to contact our reception using the grey phone on the walkway adjacent to the entrance to gain access. There is a brief menu on the phone that describes its use.

Field equipment

A major part of geophysics involves the collection of reliable, high quality data. To assist in the teaching and research process, the department owns and operates a great range of geophysical field equipment. Students become familiar with current exploration instrumentation while researchers benefit by being able to collect their own data.

Seismic equipment

800 Channel Seistronix EX6 Seismic System

A major asset of the department is the Seistronix distributed array seismic system. Each acquisition box can record and send data from 6 geophones to a computer. Current capacity is 800+ channels with future expansion planned.

Seismic sources equipment

Accelerated Weight Drop

The accelerated weight drop is a portable source that can be towed by a vehicle. A motor drives the weight against a large elastic band. The weight is released and the weight comes to rest on a plate containing the trigger device.

Rock Hammer

The skid steer mounted rock hammer enables a sweep of frequencies to be generated into the ground. Work is currently being done to better control the frequency content.

Concrete Breaker

A concrete breaker has been adapted into a seismic source. Skid steer mounted, this source is portable, reproducible and powerful.

Electromagnetic equipment


The SMARTem is a PC based 8 channel multi purpose receiver for EM, I.P. This state of the art machine enables high quality electromagnetic data even in traditionally noisy environments. This is the instrument of choice in mineral exploration.

Geonics PROTEM

Although the PROTEM can be used with multiple transmitters, it is the TEM 47 transmitter that gives this system very fast current turn off times. This translates into imaging the near surface far better than conventional systems. The ability to resolve shallow detail means the PROTEM is ideal for ground water studies.


With 250MHz and 500MHz shielded antennae, the Mala RADAR set gives high quality RADAR data in the presence of noise sources such as trees, surface iron etc.

Geometrics 856 Proton Precession Magnetometers

A pair of 856 proton precession magnetometers has been in use for a number of years in the department. These rugged and versatile magnetometers can be used as a stand alone system or as a base station when using other types of magnetometer.

Geometrics 858 Caesium Vapour Magnetometers

For ultimate detail and data quality the Geometrics 858 magnetometers are hard to beat. The magnetometers can be used conventionally or in gradient mode by mounting two sensors on one staff pole.

Electrical equipment

Vertical Electric Sounding Set

Mainly used for teaching purposes, the Curtin University of Technology made transmitter can transmit currents up to 1 amp at 260 Volts. The voltages are received with a Techtronix or Metrix high input impedance multimeters.

AGI SuperSting R8 IP

The SuperSting R8 IP is a 112 electrode earth resistivity imager. The instrument has the flexibility to use less than 112 electrodes as well as the facility to “roll” the survey along. Survey lines can then be of indefinite length. The maximum depth of penetration is around 5 meters.

Radiometric equipment

Exploranium GR 256 Spectrometer

Offering complete flexibility, the GR 256 can measure any part of the gamma energy spectrum as well as the traditionally used windows of U, Th, K and total counts.

GPS equipment

Thales Z-Max Differential GPS system

To enable gravity corrections and seismic static corrections, the GPS position of stations is measured with a Thales Z-max system. The system offers RTK measurements as well as the ability to post process the data.

Thales Pro Mark 3 handheld

Accuracy and speed of use are two features of the Pro Mark 3 GPS units. These units provide cost effective measurements where post processing will be used.

Computing equipment

Local computing environment

We have two computer laboratories located in our Department. They are in building 613 in rooms 2H17 and 2H07 respectively. Access to the labs is via a coded lock. You will be provided with the door codes when you start your studies with us. The labs are generally available 24/7 excluding the hours between 3am and 5am, which are reserved for system maintenance. Please note that only third year students and above have access to the ARRC Building 613 outside of normal business hours. Logon to the PC Laboratory workstations is via your student Oasis account.

All workstations in the labs have both Curtin site-licenced and specialist geophysics software installed to provide you with the latest technology in geophysical software applications. We have licencing agreements with many of the major geophysics software vendors.

Please ensure you save your work, log out of the lab workstations and take your personal belongings with you when you leave the labs.

Also please note that you are not permitted to modify the PC Laboratory workstations in any way, such as removing cables or peripherals, or installing additional software on the workstations.

Geophysics local shared folders

You will be provided with access to our local shared folder so you can access local data and coursework material. If required for your project work, you may be provided with a local Geophysics home folder as well on this share, which has more space than your standard Curtin home drive. You will need to request this space through your lecturer or e-mail the local IT Admin.

Geophysics Linux computer account

During your time with us you may be provided with a local Linux computer account, which is used to access our Linux clusters. Details on how you use this account will be provided by your lecturer.

Personal laptops

The use of personal laptops within the department is permitted. Wireless internet access is available throughout the department, including in the PC Laboratories. Your Curtin Oasis account is used during this process.

For further information, please contact the Curtin IT Service helpdesk.

Please note that you are NOT permitted to connect your personal laptop to the Curtin network using a cable.

The Geophysics Intranet

We have a local Intranet Website within the department. This has additional information and services to help your with your studies. You must register for full access to this site.

Specialist software used in the Department for Teaching and Research

The following software is available for use in the Department and can be used for teaching and research purposes only: