Introduction to the Pavilion Lake Research Project

Read the News from the PLRP project leads and view the public calendar.

The Pavilion Lake Research Project (PLRP) is an international, multi-disciplinary, science and exploration effort to explain the origin of freshwater microbialites in Pavilion Lake, British Columbia, Canada. Fossil microbialites represent some of the earliest remnants of life on ancient Earth, and were common from ~2.5 billion to 540 million years ago. Today, microbialites are found in environments where conditions are often too harsh for most organisms. However, the microbialites in both Pavilion and Kelly lakes have provided a new environment for the scientific community to study. These lakes demonstrate that large and uniquely shaped structures can also occur in non-extreme environments that also support fish, plants and other species. The microbialites of these modern lakes are relevant to our understanding of ancient microbiaites that were once common and diverse on early Earth, as such, Pavilion Lake has become an exciting field site for Earth scientists and astrobiologists who are interested in the application of the PLRP research to the search for life in our solar system and beyond.

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Recent Blog Posts


Haiku Science

by admin on June 24th, 2014

by Chris Haberle Pavilion Lake Study Microbialites, under water, blue.

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Outland Photo, Take 2…

by admin on June 21st, 2014

Here is a color corrected version of a photo we posted earlier this week. Thanks to Christy Sallee for the editing work and to Steve Squyres for the photo.

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Funding and support provided by:

PLRP is funded by the NASA Moon Mars Analog Mission Activities (MMAMA) program. Historically, funding has also been provided by the Canadian Space Agency’s Canadian Analogue Research Network (CARN) program, NASA ESMD Analogs, NASA ASTEP, Nuytco Research, NASA Spaceward Bound Program, the National Geographic Society, NSERC, and McMaster University.

Acknowledgements

All of us at the PLRP would like to gratefully thank the following groups for their continuing support and kindness:

• The community of Pavilion Lake and the town of Clinton, B.C.
• The Ts'kw'aylaxw people and the Pavilion First Nations Indian Band
• The Whispering Pines Indian Band
• B.C. Parks and the B.C. Ministry of Environment
• Edge Diving Centre, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
• B.C. dive community
• Mr. Jim Thompson (Clinton, B.C.)

Last, but not least, we would like to express a very special thanks to Mickey and Linda Macri of Pavilion Lake for their limitless kindness, hospitality, and encouragement over the years.