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Speleology in Kazakhstan

Shakalov on 04 Jul, 2018
Hello everyone!   I pleased to invite you to the official site of Central Asian Karstic-Speleological commission ("Kaspeko")   There, we regularly publish reports about our expeditions, articles and reports on speleotopics, lecture course for instructors, photos etc. ...

New publications on hypogene speleogenesis

Klimchouk on 26 Mar, 2012
Dear Colleagues, This is to draw your attention to several recent publications added to KarstBase, relevant to hypogenic karst/speleogenesis: Corrosion of limestone tablets in sulfidic ground-water: measurements and speleogenetic implications Galdenzi,

The deepest terrestrial animal

Klimchouk on 23 Feb, 2012
A recent publication of Spanish researchers describes the biology of Krubera Cave, including the deepest terrestrial animal ever found: Jordana, Rafael; Baquero, Enrique; Reboleira, Sofía and Sendra, Alberto. ...

Caves - landscapes without light

akop on 05 Feb, 2012
Exhibition dedicated to caves is taking place in the Vienna Natural History Museum   The exhibition at the Natural History Museum presents the surprising variety of caves and cave formations such as stalactites and various crystals. ...

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Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
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Calculating flux to predict future cave radon concentrations, Rowberry, Matt; Marti, Xavi; Frontera, Carlos; Van De Wiel, Marco; Briestensky, Milos
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Evidence of a plate-wide tectonic pressure pulse provided by extensometric monitoring in the Balkan Mountains (Bulgaria), Briestensky, Milos; Rowberry, Matt; Stemberk, Josef; Stefanov, Petar; Vozar, Jozef; Sebela, Stanka; Petro, Lubomir; Bella, Pavel; Gaal, Ludovit; Ormukov, Cholponbek;
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Your search for denudation rates (Keyword) returned 18 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 1 to 15 of 18
Observations at the Blue Waterholes, March 1965 - April 1969, and Limestone Solution on Cooleman Plain, N.S.W., 1972, Jennings, J. N.

After brief descriptions of the geomorphology of the Cooleman Plain karst and in particular of the Blue Waterholes, the methods adopted to analyse the functioning of these major risings are detailed. The discharge regime of Cave Creek below them is oceanic pluvial in type perturbed by drought and snow. There is much annual variation both in seasonal incidence and total amount, with catchment efficiency correspondingly variable. Suspended sediment concentration is even more erratic and monthly determinations are inadequate for calculating corrasional denudation rates. Mean concentrations of suspended solids are about 1/18th of solute load. Total dissolved salts have a strong inverse relationship with discharge, and mean values are high compared with those for other catchments in eastern Australia but none of these determinations are from limestone catchments. Sodium, potassium, and chlorine contents are low compared with the same catchments but silica is relatively high. The ratio of alkaline earths to alkalis indicate that Cave Creek carries carbonate waters and there is an inverse regression of the ratio on discharge. There is inverse correlation of total hardness on discharge likewise due to concentration of surface waters by evaporation in dry periods, together with reduced underground solution rate at times of large, rapid flow. The spring waters remain aggressive. Close regressions of hardness on specific conductivity now permit the latter to be determined in the place of the former. Much evidence converges to indicate that all the springs at the Blue Waterholes are fed from the same conduit. The intermittent flow which comes down the North Branch on the surface to the Blue Waterholes differs significantly in many characters from the spring waters. Rates of Ca + M carbonate equivalent removal vary directly with discharge since hardness varies much less than does water volume. These gross rates have to be adjusted for (a) atmospheric salts entering the karst directly, (b) peripheral solute inputs from the non-karst two-thirds of the catchment and (c) subjacent karst solution before they can be taken as a measure of exposed karst denudation. The methods for achieving this are set out. The total corrections amount to about one third of the total hardness, though the correction for subjacent karst on its own lies within the experimental error of the investigation. The residual rate of limestone removal from the exposed karst also shows a winter/spring high rate and a summer/autumn low rate but the seasonal incidence and annual total varied very much from year to year. In comparison with results from karsts in broadly similar climate, the seasonal rhythm conforms and so does the high proportion (78%) of the solution taking place at or close to the surface. This reduces the importance of the impounded condition of this small karst but supports the use of karst denudation rate as a measure of surface lowering. Cave passage solution may however be more important in impounded karst than its absolute contribution might suggest, by promoting rapid development of underground circulation. The mean value of limestone removal is low for the climatic type and this is probably due to high evapotranspirational loss as well as to the process of eliminating atmospheric, peripheral non-karst and subjacent karst contributions. The difficulties of applying modern solution removal rate to the historical geomorphology of this karst are made evident; at the same time even crude extrapolations are shown to isolate problems valuably.


Geomorphology of the North Karst, South Nahanni River Region, Northwest Territories, Canada, PhD Thesis, 1976, Brook, George Albert,

First investigated on the ground in June 1972, the Nahanni karst of northern Canada is the most complex karst terrain yet reported from high latitudes. It is centered at 61°28' N, longitude 124°05' W and lies within the zone of discontinuous permafrost. Mean annual temperature is 24°F and mean total precipitation 22.3 inches. Principal karst forms are fracture-located karst streets and irregularly-shaped closed depression called karst platea which may be up to 600 feet in depth. Platea often contain karst towers which are residuals of wall recession. Vertical-walled pond dolines up to 120 feet deep are common in bare karst areas while subjacent karst collapse, subsidence and suffosion depressions occur on marginal shale- and drift-mantled surfaces. Three small poljes have been identified, two produced entirely by solution, the other a structural form. These are periodically inundated. There are several peripheral fluvial canyons up to 3,000 feet deep that are blocked by glacial drift and which presently drain underground. Similarity in the hydrogeological properties of Nahanni Formation limestones at a variety of scales has led to the development of morphologically-identical karst forms which range in size from inches up to hundreds of feet. Furthermore, many of these landforms are part of a developmental sequence that at one scale links vertical-walled dolines, karst streets, platea and poljes; and at another links solution pits, grikes and joint hollows on limestone pavements. The evidence suggests that poljes form by the coalescence of dolines and uvalas just as Cvijic suggested in 1918. In attempting to explain the almost "tropical" nature of the sub-arctic Nahanni karst landform assemblage, a number of facts are of importance.
(a) The Nahanni Formation limestones have been highly warped and intensively fractures during the past one million years. Open fractures have encouraged karstification by allowing easy movement of water underground. Warping has provided the relief necessary for the development of solutional forms with a distinct vertical component.
(b) The karst can not be considered relict because it was glaciated during the Pleistocene. In addition the hydrological activity in it today is comparable with that in many humid tropical karst areas.
(c) Solutional denudation rates governed by aspects of surficial and bedrock geology may in some localized areas be equivalent to rates in humid tropical carbonate regions.
(d) At present rates, the most highly developed forms could have been produced within the last 200,000 years and because there is evidence to indicate that the karst may not have been glaciated for up to 250,000 years, such a period has been available for solutional development.
Because the Nahanni region has not been glaciated for an extremely long period, it may be one of only a few high-latitude carbonate terrains that have had time to develop fully. Its very existence questions the validity of the concept that the intensity and direction of karst development is climate-controlled. In the Nahanni at least, the structural and lithological properties of the host limestone appear to have been of greater importance. The labyrinth karst type present in regions of humid-tropical to sub-arctic climate, is an outstanding example of a structurally-controlled karst landscape. It may well be that the same controls also influence the distributions of other karst types.


Karst Denudation Rates for Selected Spring Basins in West Virginia, 1982, Ogden, Albert E.

Karst Denudation Rates for Selected Spring Basins in West Virginia. Reply, 1982, Ogden, Albert E.

Karst Denudation Rates for Selected Spring Basins in West Virginia. Discussion, 1982, Stock, Mark

Denudation Rates in the River Burry Catchment, Gower, South Wales, 1983, Chambers W.

Groundwater chemistry and cation budgets of tropical karst outcrops, Peninsular Malaysia, I. Calcium and magnesium, 1989, Crowther J,
The discharge and chemical properties of 217 autogenic groundwaters were monitored over a 1-yr period in the tower karsts of central Selangor and the Kinta Valley, and in the Setul Boundary Range. Because of differences in soil PCO2, calcium concentrations are significantly higher in the Boundary Range (mean, 82.5 mg l-1) than in the tower karst terrain (44.6 mg l-1). Local differences in both source area PCO2 and amounts of secondary deposition underground cause marked intersite variability, particularly in the tower karst. Dilution occurs during flood peaks in certain conduit and cave stream waters. Generally, however, calcium correlates positively with discharge, since the amount of secondary deposition per unit volume of water decreases at higher flows. Magnesium concentrations and Mg:Ca Mg ratios of groundwaters are strongly influenced by bedrock composition, though bedrock heterogeneity and the kinetics and equilibria of carbonate dissolution reactions preclude extremely low or high Mg:Ca Mg values. Net chemical denudation rates range from 56.6 to 70.9 m3km2yr-1.The results are considered in relation to cation fluxes in surface runoff, soil throughflow and nutrient cycling. Preliminary calcium and magnesium budgets show that (1) dissolutional activity is largely confined to the near-surface zone; and (2) the annual uptake of calcium and magnesium by tropical limestone forests is similar in magnitude to the net solute output in groundwaters

Approche gomorphologique des karsts du gypse de la Vanoise (la zone alpine et glaciaire du vallon du Fruit-Gbroulaz,Alpes), 1991, Chardon, M.
GYPSUM KARSTIC LANDFORMS IN VANOISE: the alpine and glacial valley of Vallon du Fruit-Gbroulaz (Alps, France) - In the inner part of the northern french Alps, the higher regions of the Vanoise offer outcrops of Triassic gypsum of which the surface and thickness vary. In the vallon du Fruit, the Gbroulaz glacier partially covers a long strip of gypsum, which reaches its highest point at the Roc de la Soufrire (2940 m). Rivers and springs in the vallon du Fruit are fed both by sub-aerial glacial outflows and by karstic underground flows, which are pro-glacial and sub-glacial. A very low chemical dissolution exists under the glacier and along the fast pro-glacial underground and sub-aerial flows, whereas the rate of karstic denudation is high in the margin of the glacier where it reaches 1500 mm/ky at around 2500m (1 ky = 1000 years). The formation and evolution of the dolines is rapid and occurs through underground sucking and dissolution once the area is deglaciated, thanks to underground active flows fed by the glacier and snow melting. Gypsum domes are uplifted under the effects of neotectonic movements and postglacial decompression brings about considerable superficial fissuring because of the elasticity of the rock. Over 10,000 years, the morphogenesis of these domes in the humid and cold climatic conditions of these high alpine mountains has transformed them into perforated ladle and domes. Small outcrops are changed into monoliths or gypsum inselberg. A model of the geomorphologic post-glacial evolution of these domes, over some 20,000 years, is proposed.

Carbonate chemistry of surface waters in a temperate karst region: the southern Yorkshire Dales, UK, 1992, Pentecost Allan,
A detailed study of surface water chemistry is described from an important limestone region in northern England. Major ions and pH were determined for 485 sites (springs, seeps, streams, rivers and lakes) during summertime. The saturation state of the waters with respect to calcite was determined as the calcite saturation ratio ([Omega]). An unexpectedly large number of samples were found to be supersaturated (65.5% of the 268 km of watercourses surveyed). As a consequence, several streams entering major cave systems were incapable of further limestone solution, at least during periods of low flow. Many waters were supersaturated from their source and some deposited travertine. A significant negative correlation was found between spring discharge and both ([Omega]) and pH. Supersaturation was caused primarily by atmospheric degassing, with some contribution from aquatic plant photosynthesis.The median total dissolved inorganic carbon and Ca concentrations were 2.49 and 1.35 millimoles 1-1 respectively. Calcium originated exclusively from limestone, and carbon dioxide mainly from the soil and dissolved limestone. South facing catchments provided springwaters with significantly higher levels of TDIC and Ca when compared with north facing catchments. The study suggests that acid rain made a measurable contribution to limestone dissolution.Carboniferous limestone denudation rates were estimated as 54 to 63 m3 km-2 a-1 (54 to 63 mm 1000 years-1). About 50% of the Mg came from limestone and the remainder, together with most K, Na, SO4 and Cl from precipitation.Concentrations of dissolved nutrients were low, medians for NO3, NH4, total PO4 and SiO3 were 24 [mu]mol, 1.4 [mu]mol, 0.64 [mu]mol and 15.5 [mu]mol 1-1 respectively. The concentration of a further 23 trace elements was determined

Hydrology and denudation rates of halite karst, 1994, Frumkin A,
Salt karst terrains exist mainly in arid climates where rock salt outcrops may escape complete destruction by dissolution. Such is the case with Mount Sedom, on the SW shore of the Dead Sea, one of the most arid parts of Israel. Many small catchments developed over the relatively insoluble cap rock which overlies the highly soluble rock salt. The catchments were surveyed and classified. Some 57% of the surface area is drained by an underground karst system. Water samples from various points in the system were analysed, and water development was inferred. Waters in cave conduits do not reach saturation during flood flow, unless the water is ponded for at least several hours. Based on the available evidence, regional karst denudation is tentatively estimated to be about 0.5-0.75 mm year-1, occurring mainly within the rock salt

Theoretical model of surface karstic processes, 1996, Veress M. , Pentek K. ,
Our study improves theories of denudation of karst surfaces. We examine a debris zone developed mostly by solutional fragmentation of the fissured rock. Denudation of karsts is attributed to the downward movement of the debris zone. The different rates of this movement in a karst region cause different denudation rates and so wight result in the development of dolinas. Therefore our model might be suitable for the explanation and description of the development of solution dolines. According to the differential equation of solution, the migration rate of the karstic relief is determined by the CO2 production, the soaking time and the average diameter of the fragments of the debris zone. According to the above - supposing constant parameters of karstification - the time of denudation at any point of a karstic area can be also calculated when knowing the original thickness of the rock exposed to karstic denudation. The age of a solution doline can be determined by the formula obtained

Upper Quaternary water level history and sedimentation in the northwestern Black Sea, 2000, Winguth C. , Wong H. K. , Panin N. , Dinu C. , Georgescu P. , Ungureanu G. , Krugliakov V. V. , Podshuveit V. ,
A regional water level curve for the northwestern Black Sea covering lowstands of the past 900 ka has been inferred from shelf terraces and coastal onlaps identified in seismic data. Corrections for sediment compaction, isostatic response to sediment load and thermal subsidence were included. A water level lowstand of -151 m was found for the last glaciation, ca 30 m lower than the global sea level stand at the Last Glacial Maximum. Water level could develop independently in the Black Sea due to its isolation from the global oceans when the water level of the Black Sea was lower than its outlet.In addition, a deepsea fan complex in the northwestern Black Sea was investigated by seismic reflection, showing that it can be divided into the Danube fan and the Dniepr fan (also fed by the rivers Dniestr and Southern Bug). Eight seismic sequences were distinguished in the northwestern Black Sea and their thicknesses and facies distributions mapped. The two lowermost sequences consist mainly of unchannelized mass transport deposits (slumps, slides, debris flows), while the six upper sequences with their typical channel-levee systems as well as overbank and mass transport deposits constitute the deepsea fan complex. Correlation of fan development with the regional water level curve yields an inferred age of ca 900 ka BP for the Danube fan; development of the Dniepr fan started probably about 100 ka later. Computed average sedimentation rates range between 1.19 and 2.19 m/ka for the Danube fan and between 1.07 and 2.03 m/ka for the Dniepr fan. The corresponding rates for sediment accumulation are 68-141 t/a and 41-82 t/a. Mean denudation rates in the drainage area are computed to be 0.027-0.105 mm/a and 0.017-0.127 mm/a, respectively

On denudation rates in Karst , 2007, Gabrovsek, F.

Paper presents a simple mathematical model, which enables study of denudation rates in karst. A vertical flow of water which is uniformly infiltrated at the surface is assumed. Denudation rate is calculated from the time needed to remove certain thickness of rock. This is done concretely on a limestone block dissected by a vertical array of fractures. It is shown that denudation rate increases with the thickness of removed layer and approaches an upper limit which is defined by the maximum denudation equations, which are based on assumption that all dissolution potential is projected into a surface lowering.


Physics and chemistry of dissolution on subaerialy exposed soluble rocks by flowing water films, 2007, Dreybrodt W. , Kaufmann G.

The basic process active in the formation of subaerial features on karst rocks is chemical dissolution of limestone or gypsum by water films flowing on the rock surface. The dissolution rates of limestone and gypsum into thin films of water in laminar flow are given by F = .(ceq-c), where (ceq-c) is the difference of the actual concentration c in the water film and the equilibrium concentration ceq with respect to the corresponding mineral. Whereas for gypsum . is determined by molecular diffusion the situation is more complex for limestone. Experiments are presented, which show that for high undersaturation, c<0.3ceq, the rate law is F = .( 0.3ceq-c) ,and . becomes higher by about a factor of ten than for the rates at c>0.3ceq. These rate laws are used to calculate denudation rates on bare rock surfaces exposed to rainfall with differing intensity. The estimations are in reasonable agreement to field data. Starting from the experiments on the formation of Rillenkarren on gypsum performed by Glew and Ford (1980), we suggest a new relation between their length from the crest to the “Ausgleichsfläche” and the inclination of the rock surface. This is also applied to field data of Rillenkarren on limestone provided by J. Lundberg and A. Gines. In view of the many parameters influencing the formation of Rillenkarren these correlations can be considered as satisfactory.


Evolution of solution dolines inferred from cosmogenic 36Cl in calcite , 2010, Matsushi Y. , Hattanji T. , Akiyama S. , Sasa K. , Takahashi T. , Sueki K. , Matsukura Y.

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