This unit provides paleontological support to basic geology mapping projects through the identification of collected or observed fauna, flora, and fossil traces in terrain, assigning ages, when possible, relative to the rocks containing them, for which its paleoenvironmental significance is also evaluated.
Another central activity consists in making a digital registry and physical conservation of the institutional Paleontological Collection fossils. These inputs guarantee the national geological mapping product information, allowing for its reanalysis and comparison with new data or findings, and have been or could be used by the service professionals, and national and foreign specialists to create new geological and paleontological information.
The institution paleontologists maintain research projects on the fossil macroinvertebrates taxonomy, especially in oysters and other bivalves’ groups, intending to know their diversity and increasing biochronoestigraphic knowledge and application of the studied species or taxa, which is released to the public in publications and at scientific gatherings.
Stephanoceras chilensis, ammonite from the Jurassic period of Northern Chile (~ 170 million years)