Recent analyses of brines from the Salars of Uyuni and Coipasa have been compared with published data for Lakes Titicaca and Poopo to evaluate solute compositional trends in these remnants of two large Pleistocene lakes once connected by overflow from the N to the S of the Bolivian Altiplano. From Titicaca to Poopo the water shows an increase in Cl and N somewhat greater than the total solutes. Ca and SO4 increase to a lesser extent than total dissolved solids, and carbonate species are relatively constant. Between Poopo and Coipasa proportions of Ca, SO4 and CO3 continue to decrease. At Coipasa and Uyuni, the great salars frequently evaporate to halite saturation. Halite crystallization is accompanied by an increased K, Mg and SO4 in residual brines. - from Authors
Additional publication details
Geochemical evolution of brines in the Salar of Uyuni, Bolivia.