Laguna Negra

Laguna Negra, in Catamarca province, NW Argentina is a hypersaline high altitude lake, near the base of Monte Pissis. The lake precipitates contains abundant microbial mats, and precipitates carbonate in oncoidal, stromatolitic, and laminate forms.

We are interested in investigating the cycling of carbon and sulfur in these unusual mats and carbonates, and better understanding whether we can come up with a predictive model that relates lake chemistry and microbial communities to the carbonate morphologies that are similar to those seen in carbonate deposits throughout Earth history. This work is being spearheaded by Scott Beeler, in collaboration with Fernando Gomez, a colleague at the University of Córdoba.