Scientific drilling of Lake Chalco, Basin of Mexico (MexiDrill)

Erik T. Brown, Margarita Caballero, Enrique Cabral Cano, Peter J. Fawcett, Socorro Lozano-García, Beatriz Ortega, Liseth Pérez, Antje Schwalb, Victoria Smith, Byron A. Steinman, Mona Stockhecke, Blas Valero-Garcés, Sebastian Watt, Nigel J. Wattrus, Josef P. Werne, Thomas Wonik, Amy E. Myrbo, Anders J. Noren, Ryan O'Grady, Douglas SchnurrenbergerRodrigo Martínez Abarca, Angeles Ortíz Beltrán, Cecilia Caballero, Laura Cappio, Rafael Cossio, Troy Ferland, Katja Hesse, Jens Kallmeyer, Dervla Kumar, Sandra García Leon, Ivan Martínez, Carmen Acosta Noriega, Frank Preusser, Harriet Rawson, Ana María Soler, Susana Sosa-Nájera, Diana Avendaño Villeda, Christian Zeeden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


The primary scientific objective of MexiDrill, the Basin of Mexico Drilling Program, is development of a continuous, high-resolution <span classCombining double low line"inline-formula ∼4400kyr lacustrine record of tropical North American environmental change. The field location, in the densely populated, water-stressed Mexico City region gives this record particular societal relevance. A detailed paleoclimate reconstruction from central Mexico will enhance our understanding of long-term natural climate variability in the North American tropics and its relationship with changes at higher latitudes. The site lies at the northern margin of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ), where modern precipitation amounts are influenced by sea surface temperatures in the Pacific and Atlantic basins. During the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), more winter precipitation at the site is hypothesized to have been a consequence of a southward displacement of the mid-latitude westerlies. It thus represents a key spatial node for understanding large-scale hydrological variability of tropical and subtropical North America and is at an altitude (2240 a.s.l.), typical of much of western North America. In addition, its sediments contain a rich record of pre-Holocene volcanic history; knowledge of the magnitude and frequency relationships of the area's explosive volcanic eruptions will improve capacity for risk assessment of future activity. Explosive eruption deposits will also be used to provide the backbone of a robust chronology necessary for full exploitation of the paleoclimate record. Here we report initial results from, and outreach activities of, the 2016 coring campaign.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalScientific Drilling
StatePublished - Dec 2 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgements. This research was supported by research funding from the US NSF, UNAM, ICDP, and the Swiss NSF. Mark Brenner’s careful reading and thoughtful suggestions improved the manuscript.

Funding Information:
Financial support. This research has been supported by the ICDP (grant 2014/05), the US-NSF EAR (grant nos. 1803725, 1551311, 1804858, 1551429, and 1804429), the UNAM (grant nos. UNAM-DGAPA PAPIIT-IV100215 and IN103819), and the Swiss NSF (grant no. P300P2 158501).


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