Deep drilling at the Chalco lake: A technical report

Socorro Lozano-García, Erik T. Brown, Beatriz Ortega, Margarita Caballero, Josef Werne, Peter J. Fawcett, Antje Schwalb, Blas L. Valero-Garcés, Douglas Schnurrenberger, Ryan O'Grady, Mona Stockhecke, Byron Steinman, Enrique Cabral-Cano, Cecilia Caballero, Susana Sosa-Nájera, Ana María Soler, Liseth Pérez, Anders Noren, Amy Myrbo, Matthias BückerNigel Wattrus, Alejandra Arciniega, Thomas Wonik, Sebastian Watt, Dervla Kumar, Carmen Acosta, Ivan Martínez, Rafael Cossio, Troy Ferland, Filiberto Vergara-Huerta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


This paper presents a short description of the coring operations undertaken to recover the full lacustrine sedimentary sequence from Chalco. Geophysical techniques were used to determine the distribution and thickness of the sediments in order to select the drilling site. Resonance frequencies determined from H/V spectral ratios were used to determine an area where lake sediments reached 300 m thickness. Electromagnetic survey showed two changes in electric resistivity which were related to changes in sediment composition, the first from 100 to 120 m, related to an increase in volcanoclastic sediments and the second from 330 to 400 m related to the presence of a basaltic flows. Three wells were drilled with continuous recovery, reaching depths of 420 m in well A, 310 in B and 520 in C. Samples for geomicrobiological and metagenomics studies were collected during drilling operations. A total of 1152 m of core sediments were recovered reaching a maximum depth of 520 m. Recovery percentages were between 88 and 92 % in the three wells. Magnetic susceptibility analyses in the three sequences show that the first 260 m are mostly lake sediments, between 260 and 300 m sediments are coarser and below 300 m they are mostly volcaniclastic. Analysis of the sedimentary sequence of Lake Chalco that covers the last ~300000 years will allow documenting and extending the knowledge of climate variability in area, the paleoenvironmental history, basin closure history, lacustrian system development and volcanic activity recurrence. Studies of the physical properties of this sequence will be important for seismic propagation and basin structure modeling, and also will improve modeling of the subsidence process that this region experiences.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)299-311
Number of pages13
JournalBoletin de la Sociedad Geologica Mexicana
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Project 05-2014), US National Science Foundation (NSF-EAR1551311). Expresamos nuestro agradecimiento a la M. en G. Laura Luna por el apoyo en la elaboración del mapa del sitio. Agra-decemos especialmente el invaluable apoyo de los ejidatarios del Ejido Santiago Tulyehualco gracias al cual se pudo realizar este trabajo, en particular queremos expresar nuestro reconocimiento al Sr. Gumesindo Jiménez Cabello, Sr. Juan Jiménez Xolapa y al Sr. Macedonio Jiménez Molotla.


  • Basin of Mexico
  • Chalco
  • Lacustrian sediments
  • Paleoclimate
  • Volcanism

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