|Paipa–Iza volcanic complex|
View of Iza volcano from the east
|Parent peak||Altiplano Cundiboyacense|
|Native name||Complejo volcánico de Paipa–Iza (Spanish)|
|English translation||"cacique Paipa & place of healing"|
|Location|| Paipa, Iza, Boyacá |
|Parent range||Eastern Ranges, Andes|
|Age of rock||Pliocene-Pleistocene|
|Mountain type||Volcanic field|
|Type of rock||Porphyritic plagioclase and sanidine-rich rhyolites|
|Volcanic belt|| Andean Volcanic Belt |
Northern Volcanic Zone
|Last eruption||Early Pleistocene|
|Easiest route||Drive to Paipa or Iza|
|Access||Partially restricted (quarries)|
Thermal baths touristic attraction
The Paipa–Iza volcanic complex is a volcanic field of Late Pliocene to Early Pleistocene age on the Altiplano Cundiboyacense in the Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. It is the northernmost volcanic complex of the Andean Volcanic Belt with Fueguino in Tierra del Fuego, Chile, at the opposite end of the Andean mountain belt.
A volcanic field is an area of the Earth's crust that is prone to localized volcanic activity. They usually contain 10 to 100 volcanoes such as cinder cones and are usually in clusters. Lava flows may also occur. They may occur as a monogenetic volcanic field or a polygenetic volcanic field.
The Pliocene Epoch is the epoch in the geologic timescale that extends from 5.333 million to 2.58 million years BP. It is the second and youngest epoch of the Neogene Period in the Cenozoic Era. The Pliocene follows the Miocene Epoch and is followed by the Pleistocene Epoch. Prior to the 2009 revision of the geologic time scale, which placed the four most recent major glaciations entirely within the Pleistocene, the Pliocene also included the Gelasian stage, which lasted from 2.588 to 1.806 million years ago, and is now included in the Pleistocene.
The Pleistocene is the geological epoch that lasted from about 2,580,000 to 11,700 years ago, spanning the world's most recent period of repeated glaciations. The end of the Pleistocene corresponds with the end of the last glacial period and also with the end of the Paleolithic age used in archaeology.
The complex, comprising mainly felsic extrusive volcanic rocks as rhyolites, also is the only confirmed volcanic province in the Eastern Ranges, with traces of probably contemporaneous explosive volcanic activity in the vicinity of Guatavita, Cundinamarca.
In geology, felsic refers to igneous rocks that are relatively rich in elements that form feldspar and quartz. It is contrasted with mafic rocks, which are relatively richer in magnesium and iron. Felsic refers to silicate minerals, magma, and rocks which are enriched in the lighter elements such as silicon, oxygen, aluminium, sodium, and potassium. Felsic magma or lava is higher in viscosity than mafic magma/lava.
Rhyolite ( RY-ə-lyte, RY-oh-) is an igneous, volcanic rock, of felsic (silica-rich) composition (typically > 69% SiO2 – see the TAS classification). It may have any texture from glassy to aphanitic to porphyritic. The mineral assemblage is usually quartz, sanidine and plagioclase (in a ratio > 2:1 – see the QAPF diagram). Biotite and hornblende are common accessory minerals. It is the extrusive equivalent to granite.
Guatavita is a municipality and town of Colombia in the Guavio Province of the department of Cundinamarca. Guatavita is located 75 km northeast of the capital Bogotá. It borders Sesquilé and Machetá in the north, Gachetá and Junín in the east, Guasca and Sopó in the south and in the west are Tocancipá and Gachancipá.
The Paipa-Iza volcanic field is important as a touristic site with thermal baths in both Paipa and Iza and is being studied for the potential of geothermal energy production and for the extraction of uranium in the area.
Geothermal energy is thermal energy generated and stored in the Earth. Thermal energy is the energy that determines the temperature of matter. The geothermal energy of the Earth's crust originates from the original formation of the planet and from radioactive decay of materials. The geothermal gradient, which is the difference in temperature between the core of the planet and its surface, drives a continuous conduction of thermal energy in the form of heat from the core to the surface. The adjective geothermal originates from the Greek roots γη (ge), meaning earth, and θερμος (thermos), meaning hot.
Uranium is a chemical element with the symbol U and atomic number 92. It is a silvery-grey metal in the actinide series of the periodic table. A uranium atom has 92 protons and 92 electrons, of which 6 are valence electrons. Uranium is weakly radioactive because all isotopes of uranium are unstable; the half-lives of its naturally occurring isotopes range between 159,200 years and 4.5 billion years. The most common isotopes in natural uranium are uranium-238 and uranium-235. Uranium has the highest atomic weight of the primordially occurring elements. Its density is about 70% higher than that of lead, and slightly lower than that of gold or tungsten. It occurs naturally in low concentrations of a few parts per million in soil, rock and water, and is commercially extracted from uranium-bearing minerals such as uraninite.
The names Paipa and Iza originate in Muysccubun, the language of the indigenous Muisca, who inhabited the Altiplano Cundiboyacense before the Spanish conquest. Paipa was the name of a cacique who served under cacique Tundama of Duitama and Iza means "place of healing".
Chibcha is an extinct language of Colombia, spoken by the Muisca, one of the four advanced indigenous civilizations of the Americas. The Muisca inhabited the central highlands of what today is the country of Colombia.
The Muisca are an indigenous people and culture of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Colombia, that formed the Muisca Confederation before the Spanish conquest. The people spoke Muysccubun, a language of the Chibchan language family, also called Muysca and Mosca. As one out of four advanced civilizations of the Americas, they were encountered by conquistadors ordered by the Spanish Empire in 1537 at the time of the conquest. Subgroupings of the Muisca were mostly identified by their allegiances to three great rulers: the zaque, centered in Hunza, ruling a territory roughly covering modern southern and northeastern Boyacá and southern Santander; the zipa, centered in Bacatá and encompassing most of modern Cundinamarca, the western Llanos; and the iraca, religious ruler of Suamox and modern northeastern Boyacá and southwestern Santander.
The Spanish conquest of the Muisca took place from 1537 to 1540. The Muisca were the inhabitants of the central Andean highlands of Colombia before the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors. They were organised in a loose confederation of different rulers; the zipa of Bacatá, with his headquarters in Funza, the zaque of Boyacá, with his headquarters in Hunza, the iraca of the sacred City of the Sun Sugamuxi, the Tundama of Tundama, and several independent caciques. The leaders of the Confederation at the time of conquest were zipa Tisquesusa, zaque Quemuenchatocha, iraca Sugamuxi and Tundama in the northernmost portion of their territories. The Muisca were organised in small communities of circular enclosures, with a central square where the bohío of the cacique was located. They were called "Salt People" because of their extraction of salt in various locations throughout their territories, mainly in Zipaquirá, Nemocón and Tausa. For the main part self-sufficient in their well-organised economy, the Muisca traded with the European conquistadors valuable products as gold, tumbaga and emeralds with their neighbouring indigenous groups. In the Tenza Valley, to the east of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense where the majority of the Muisca lived, they extracted emeralds in Chivor and Somondoco. The economy of the Muisca was rooted in their agriculture with main products maize, yuca, potatoes and various other cultivations elaborated on elevated fields. Agriculture had started around 3000 BCE on the Altiplano, following the preceramic Herrera Period and a long epoch of hunter-gatherers since the late Pleistocene. The earliest archaeological evidence of inhabitation in Colombia, and one of the oldest in South America, has been found in El Abra, dating to around 12,500 years BP.
The Paipa–Iza volcanic complex is located in the northern part of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense at altitudes between 2,500 and 2,770 metres (8,200 and 9,090 ft). The northwestern part of the complex is situated in the municipality Paipa and the southeastern part in Iza, both belonging to the department of Boyacá.
The Municipalities of Colombia are decentralized subdivisions of the Republic of Colombia. Municipalities make up most of the departments of Colombia with 1,122 municipalities (municipios). Each one of them is led by a mayor (alcalde) elected by popular vote and represents the maximum executive government official at a municipality level under the mandate of the governor of their department which is a representative of all municipalities in the department; municipalities are grouped to form departments.
Paipa is a town and municipality in the Tundama Province, a part of the Colombian department of Boyacá. Paipa borders Duitama, Firavitoba, Tibasosa, Sotaquirá and Tuta.
Iza is a town and municipality in Boyacá Department, Colombia. Iza is located near the Tota Lake and part of the Sugamuxi Province, a subregion of Boyacá. Iza is located in the Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes on the Altiplano Cundiboyacense at a distance of 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) from Sogamoso and 90 kilometres (56 mi) from the department capital Tunja. The municipality borders Firavitoba and Sogamoso in the north, Sogamoso and Cuítiva in the east, in the west Pesca and Firavitoba, and in the south Cuítiva.
|Climate chart (explanation)|
|Age||Paleomap||VMM||Guaduas-Vélez||W Emerald Belt||Villeta anticlinal|| Chiquinquirá-|
|Altiplano Cundiboyacense||El Cocuy|
|Maastrichtian||Umir Fm.||Córdoba Fm.||Seca Fm.||eroded||Guadalupe Gp.||Colón-Mito Juan Fm.|
|Santonian||La Luna Fm.||Cimarrona Fm. - La Tabla Fm.||La Luna Fm.|
|Coniacian||Oliní Gp.||Conejo Fm.||Chipaque Fm.|
|Loma Gorda Fm.||undefined||La Frontera Fm.|
|Turonian||Hondita Fm.||La Frontera Fm.||Otanche Fm.|
|Cenomanian||Simití Fm.||hiatus||La Corona Gb.||Simijaca Fm.||Capacho Fm.|
|Pacho Fm.||Hiló Fm. - Pacho Fm.||Churuvita Fm.||Une Fm.||Aguardiente Fm.|
|Albian||Hiló Fm.||Chiquinquirá Sst.||Tibasosa Fm.||Une Fm.|
|Tablazo Fm.||Tablazo Fm.||Capotes Fm. - La Palma Fm. - Simití Fm.||Simití Fm.||Tibú-Mercedes Fm.|
|Aptian||Capotes Fm.||Socotá Fm. - El Peñón Fm.||Paja Fm.||Fómeque Fm.|
|Paja Fm.||Paja Fm.||El Peñón Fm.||Trincheras Fm.||Río Negro Fm.|
|La Naveta Fm.|
|Hauterivian||Muzo Fm.||Las Juntas Fm.|
|Rosablanca Fm.||Ritoque Fm.|
|Valanginian||Ritoque Fm.||Furatena Fm.||Útica Fm. - Murca Fm.||Rosablanca Fm.||Girón Fm.||Macanal Fm.|
|Berriasian||Cumbre Fm.||Cumbre Fm.||Los Medios Fm.||Guavio Fm.|
|Tambor Fm.||Arcabuco Fm.||Cumbre Fm.|
The complex was active from the late Pliocene, around 2.7 Ma, until the earliest Pleistocene, around 2.3 Ma.
The complex at Iza consists of two domes; Domo Holcim with 0.67 square kilometres (7,200,000 sq ft) and Domo Los Sauces 0.12 square kilometres (30 acres) in size. They consist of porphyritic rhyolites with sanidine and plagioclase as dominant mineral groups and abundant xenoliths of sedimentary rock and in minor quantities volcanic or metamorphic fragments. The overall rock composition is very felsic and comprises biotites and amphiboles as opaque minerals.
The complex is studied for the potential of geothermal energy production.
The complex is studied for the potential of uranium mining.
The Simijaca Formation (Spanish: Formación Simijaca, K2S, Kss) is a geological formation of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The predominantly mudstone formation dates to the Late Cretaceous period; Turonian and Cenomanian epochs, and has a maximum thickness of 693 metres (2,274 ft).
The Chipaque Formation (Spanish: Formación Chipaque, K2cp, Kc) is a geological formation of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The predominantly organic shale formation dates to the Late Cretaceous period; Cenomanian-Turonian epochs and has a maximum thickness of 1,700 metres (5,600 ft). The formation, rich in TOC, is an important oil and gas generating unit for the giant oilfields Cupiagua and Cusiana of the Eastern Ranges as well as in the Llanos Orientales.
The Guadalupe Group (Spanish: Grupo Guadalupe, K2G, Ksg) is a geological group of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The group, a sequence of shales and sandstones, is subdivided into three formations; Arenisca Dura, Plaeners and Arenisca Labor-Tierna, and dates to the Late Cretaceous period; Campanian-Maastrichtian epochs and at its type section has a thickness of 750 metres (2,460 ft).
The Guaduas Formation (Spanish: Formación Guaduas, K2P1G, K2E1G, KPgg, KTg, TKg, Ktg) is a geological formation of the Middle Magdalena Basin and the Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The predominantly shale with coalbed formation dates to the Late Cretaceous and Paleogene periods; Maastrichtian-Paleocene epochs, and has a maximum thickness of 1,090 metres (3,580 ft). Fossils of Coussapoa camargoi, Ficus andrewsi, Berhamniphyllum sp. and Archaeopaliurus boyacensis have been found in coalbeds in Zipaquirá and Tasco, Boyacá.
The Cacho Formation (Spanish: Formación Cacho, E1C, Tpc, Tec) is a geological formation of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The predominantly sandstone formation with thin intercalated beds of shales dates to the Paleogene period; Middle to Late Paleocene epochs, and has a maximum thickness of 400 metres (1,300 ft).
The Bogotá Formation (Spanish: Formación Bogotá, E1-2b, Tpb, Pgb) is a geological formation of the Eastern Hills and Bogotá savanna on the Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The predominantly shale and siltstone formation, with sandstone beds intercalated, dates to the Paleogene period; Upper Paleocene to Lower Eocene epochs, with an age range of 61.66 to 52.5 Ma, spanning the Paleocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum. The thickness of the Bogotá Formation ranges from 169 metres (554 ft) near Tunja to 1,415 metres (4,642 ft) near Bogotá. Fossils of the ungulate Etayoa bacatensis have been found in the Bogotá Formation, as well as numerous reptiles, unnamed as of 2017.
The Regadera Formation (Spanish: Formación Regadera, E2r, Tpr) is a geological formation of the Bogotá savanna, Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The predominantly sandstone and conglomeratic formation, with pink shale beds intercalated, dates to the Paleogene period; Middle to Late Eocene epoch, and has a maximum thickness of 765 metres (2,510 ft).
The La Frontera Formation (Spanish: Formación La Frontera, K2F, Ksf) is a geological formation, part of the Villeta Group, of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense and neighbouring areas of the Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The sequence of limestones and lydites dates to the Late Cretaceous period; Turonian epoch and has a maximum thickness of 206 metres (676 ft).
The Conejo Formation (Spanish: Formación Conejo, K2C, Kscn) is a fossiliferous geological formation of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The uppermost unit of the Villeta Group, a sequence of shales and sandstones dates to the Late Cretaceous period; Turonian, Coniacian and Santonian epochs, and has a maximum thickness of 1,022 metres (3,353 ft).
The Chorrera Formation is a geological formation of the Bogotá savanna, Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The formation consists of coarse to very coarse conglomerates. The Chorrera Formation dates to the Neogene period; Pliocene epoch, and has a maximum thickness of 40 metres (130 ft).
The Tilatá Formation is a geological formation of the Bogotá savanna, Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The formation consists of coarse to very coarse conglomerates and sandstones. The Tilatá Formation dates to the Neogene period; Early to Late Pliocene epoch, and has a maximum thickness of 83 metres (272 ft). The formation underlies the Quaternary sequence of alluvial, lacustrine and fluvial sediments of Lake Humboldt.
The Floresta Formation is a geological formation of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense in the Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The sequence of siltstones, shales, coquinas and sandstone beds dates to the Devonian period; Late Emsian, Eifelian and Early Givetian epochs, and has a maximum thickness of 600 metres (2,000 ft). The unit is highly fossiliferous; brachiopods, bryozoans, gastropods, trilobites, corals and bivalves have been found in the Floresta Formation. Some fragments of Placoderm fish fossils were found in the Floresta Formation, while the overlying Cuche Formation is much richer in fish biodiversity.
The Arcabuco Formation is a geological formation of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The formation consists of thick beds of light-coloured quartzitic sandstones and conglomerates with occasional shales and dates to the Late Jurassic and Early Cretaceous periods; Tithonian to Berriasian epochs. Dinosaur footprints have been found in the Arcabuco Formation near the Iguaque anticlinal outside Chíquiza, Boyacá.
The Rosablanca Formation is a geological formation of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes and the Middle Magdalena Basin. The formation consists of grey limestones, dolomites and shales with at the upper part sandstones. The formation dates to the Early Cretaceous period; Valanginian epoch and has a thickness of 425 metres (1,394 ft) in the valley of the Sogamoso River.
The Guavio Formation is a geological formation of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense, Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The formation consists of conglomerates, shales and limestones, dates to the Late Jurassic and Early Cretaceous periods; Tithonian to Berriasian epochs and has a maximum thickness of 1,000 metres (3,300 ft).
The Villeta Group is a geological group of the Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes, to the west of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense. The group, a sequence of shales, limestones and sandstones, is subdivided into various formations; Conejo, La Frontera, Simijaca, Hiló, Pacho, Chiquinquirá, Capotes, Socotá, El Peñón, and Trincheras, and dates to the Cretaceous period; Aptian-Coniacian epochs. The group stretches out across four departments, from Huila in the south, through Cundinamarca and Boyacá to southern Santander in the north. The upper part of the Villeta Group is time-equivalent with the La Luna Formation of the Middle Magdalena Valley (VMM) and Sierra Nevada del Cocuy, the Oliní and Güagüaquí Groups of the Guaduas-Vélez synclinal and the Chipaque Formation of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense. The lower part has been correlated with the Simití, Tablazo and Paja Formations of the VMM, the upper Tibasosa, Une and Fómeque Formations of the Altiplano Cundiboyacense and the Capacho, Aguardiente, Tibú-Mercedes and upper Río Negro Formations of the Sierra Nevada del Cocuy.
The Loma Gorda Formation is a fossiliferous geological formation of the Upper Magdalena Valley (VSM) and surrounding Central and Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes, extending from Cundinamarca in the north to Huila and easternmost Tolima in the south. The uppermost unit of the Güagüaquí Group, a sequence of laminated siltstones and shales, dates to the Late Cretaceous period; Turonian to Coniacian epochs, and has a maximum thickness of 167 metres (548 ft).
The Hondita Formation is a fossiliferous geological formation of the Upper Magdalena Valley (VSM) and surrounding Central and Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes, extending from Cundinamarca in the north to Huila and easternmost Tolima in the south. The lowermost unit of the Güagüaquí Group, a sequence of sandy limestones and shales, dates to the Late Cretaceous period; Turonian epoch, and has a maximum thickness of 90 metres (300 ft).
The Caballos Formation is a geological formation of the Upper Magdalena Valley (VSM), Caguán-Putumayo Basin, Central and Eastern Ranges of the Colombian Andes. The sandstone and shale formation dates to the Middle Cretaceous period; Aptian to Albian epochs and has a maximum thickness of 411 metres (1,348 ft).
The Chibcha Terrane, named after Chibcha, is the largest of the geological provinces (terranes) of Colombia. The terrane, the oldest explored domains of which date to the Meso- to Neoproterozoic, is situated on the North Andes Plate. The megaregional Romeral Fault System forms the contact of the terrane with the Tahamí Terrane. The contact with the Caribbean and La Guajira Terranes is formed by the regional Bucaramanga-Santa Marta Fault. The northeastern boundary is formed by the regional Oca Fault, bounding the La Guajira Terrane. The terrane is emplaced over the Río Negro-Juruena Province of the Amazonian Craton along the megaregional Eastern Frontal Fault System.