The Sierra La Primavera, a late Pleistocene rhyolitic caldera complex in Jalisco, Me??xico, contains fumaroles and large-discharge 65??C hot springs that are associated with faults related to caldera collapse and to later magma insurgence. The nearly-neutral, sodium bicarbonate, hot springs occur at low elevations at the margins of the complex, whereas the water-rich fumaroles are high and central. The Comisio??n Federal de Electricidad de Me??xico (CFE) has recently drilled two deep holes at the center of the Sierra (PR-1 and Pr-2) and one deep hole at the western margin. Temperatures as high as 285??C were encountered at 1160 m in PR-1, which produced fluids with 820 to 865 mg/kg chloride after flashing to one atmosphere. Nearby, PR-2 encountered temperatures to 307??C at 2000 m and yielded fluids with chloride contents fluctuating between 1100 and 1560 mg/kg after flashing. Neither of the high-temperature wells produced steam in commercial quantities. The well at the western margin of the Sierra produced fluids similar to those from the hot springs. The temperature reached a maximum of 100??C near the surface and decreased to 80??C at 2000 m. Various geothermometers (quartz conductive, Na/K, Na-K-Ca, ??18O(SO4-H2O) and D/H (steam-water) all yield temperatures of 170 ?? 20??C when applied to the hot spring waters, suggesting that these spring waters flow from a large shallow reservoir at this temperature. Because the hot springs are much less saline than the fluids recovered in PR-1 and PR-2, the mixed fluid in the shallow reservoir can contain no more than 10-20% deep fluid. This requires that most of the heat is transferred by steam. There is probably a thin vapor-dominated zone in the central part of the Sierra, through which steam and gases are transferred to the overlying shallow reservoir. Fluids from this reservoir cool from ???170??C to 65??C by conduction during the 5-7 km of lateral flow to the hot springs. ?? 1983.
Additional publication details
A reconnaissance geochemical study of La Primavera geothermal area, Jalisco, Mexico