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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. ...

Did you know?

That vadose seepage is see percolation, percolation water.?

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Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
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Featured articles from other Geoscience Journals
Karst environment, Culver D.C.
Mushroom Speleothems: Stromatolites That Formed in the Absence of Phototrophs, Bontognali, Tomaso R.R.; D’Angeli Ilenia M.; Tisato, Nicola; Vasconcelos, Crisogono; Bernasconi, Stefano M.; Gonzales, Esteban R. G.; De Waele, Jo
Calculating flux to predict future cave radon concentrations, Rowberry, Matt; Marti, Xavi; Frontera, Carlos; Van De Wiel, Marco; Briestensky, Milos
Microbial mediation of complex subterranean mineral structures, Tirato, Nicola; Torriano, Stefano F.F;, Monteux, Sylvain; Sauro, Francesco; De Waele, Jo; Lavagna, Maria Luisa; D’Angeli, Ilenia Maria; Chailloux, Daniel; Renda, Michel; Eglinton, Timothy I.; Bontognali, Tomaso Renzo Rezio
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 glacial meltwater (Keyword) returned 8 results for the whole karstbase:
Along the Hornsund fault zone, South Spitsbergen (76-degrees-60'N), thermokarstic springs smell of H2S and display either growth of, or eject fragments of, organic slime. The temperature in individual springs varies between 4 and 15-degrees-C. Their rate of discharge is approximately 1 L s-1 to 18 m3 s-1, corresponding to a minimum temperature of 30-degrees-C within the base of the aquifer. The water, which contains a few ppm SO4(2-), 0.5 ppm S2-, and several thousand ppm NaCl, appears to be a mixture of turbid glacial meltwater and hot brine. Water chemistry and stable isotopes indicate that the salinity is not the result of simple dilution of modern seawater from the brackish zone beneath the coastal karst aquifer, but rather originates from a deep thermal brine component where concentrations and isotopic composition of various species are controlled by water-rock interaction in the source area of the brine. A value of DELTAdeltaS-34 of up to about 30 parts per thousand indicates that sulfide is a bioreduction product of sulfate. Scanning electron microscope (SEM) studies revealed bacteria and fungal hypha in the organic slime, and larger spherical particles (approximately 3.8 mum diameter) that display high concentrations of Fe and S. These findings demonstrate the presence of sulfate-reducing bacteria within the subpermafrost aquifer

Rapport entre karst et glaciers durant les glaciations dans les valles pralpines du sud des Alpes, 1998, Bini Alfredo, Tognini Paola, Zuccoli Luisa
At least 13 glaciations occurred during the last 2.6Ma in the Southern pre_alpine valleys. The glaciers scouring alpine and pre-alpine valleys had all the same feature, being valley temperated glaciers. Their tracks and feeding areas were always the same, just like the petrological contents of their deposits. Contrary to previous assumptions until a few years ago, the origin of these valleys and of the lakes occupying the floor of some of them (Orta, Maggiore, Como, Iseo, Garda Lakes) is due to fluvial erosion related to Messinian marine regression. The valley slopes modelling is Messinian in age, too, while most caves are older. As a general rule, glaciers worked on valley slopes just as a re_modelling agent, while their effects were greater on valley floors. The karstic evolution began as soon as the area was lifted above sea level (upper Oligocene - lower Miocene), in a palaeogeographical environment quite different from the present one, although the main valley floors were already working as a base level. During Messinian age, the excavation of deep canyons along pre-existing valleys caused a dramatic lowering of the base level, followed by a complete re-arrangement of the karstic networks, which got deeper and deeper. The Pliocene marine transgression caused a new re-arrangement, the karst network getting mostly drowned under sea level. During these periods, the climate was hot-wet tropical, characterised by a great amount of water circulating during the wet season. At the same time tectonic upliftings were at work, causing breaking up of the karst networks and a continuous rearrangement of the underground drainage system. In any case, karstic networks were already well developed long before the beginning of Plio-Quaternary glaciations. During glaciations, karst systems in pre-alpine valleys could have been submitted to different drainage conditions, being: a) isolated, without any glacial water flowing; b) flooded, connected to the glacier water-filled zone; c) active, scoured by a stream sinking at glacier sides or in a sub glacial position. The stream could flow to the flooded zone (b), or scour all the unflooded system long down to the resurgence zone, the latter being generally located in a sub glacier position. The glacier/karst system is a very dynamic one: it could get active, flooded or isolated depending on endo- and sub-glacial drainage variations. Furthermore, glaciers show different influences on karstic networks, thus working with a different effect during their advance, fluctuations, covering and recession phases. Many authors believe, or believed, the development of most surface and underground karst in the Alps is due to glaciations, with the last one held to be mostly responsible for this. Whatever the role of glaciers on karstic systems, in pre-alpine valleys caves, we do not have evidence either of development of new caves or of remarkable changes in their features during glaciations. It is of course possible some pits or galleries could have developed during Plio-Quaternary glaciations, but as a general rule glaciers do not seem to have affected karstic systems in the Southern pre-alpine valleys with any remarkable speleogenetic effects: the glaciers effects on them is generally restricted to the transport of great amounts of debris and sediments into caves. The spotting of boulders and pebbles trapped between roof stalactites shows that several phases of in- and out-filling of galleries occurred with no remarkable changing in pre-dating features, including cave decorations. The presence of suspended karst systems does not prove a glacial origin of the valleys, since most of them pre-date any Plio-Quaternary glaciation, as shown by calcite cave deposits older than 1,5Ma. The sediments driven into caves might have caused a partial or total occlusion of most galleries, with a remarkable re-arrangement of the underground drainage system. In caves submitted to periglacial conditions all glaciations long, we can find deposits coming from weathered surface sediments, sharp-edged gelifraction debris and, more rarely, alluvial deposits whose origin is not related to the circulation of the glacial meltwater. In caves lower than or close to the glaciers limit we generally find large amounts of glacier-related deposits, often partly or totally occluding cave galleries. These sediments may be directly related to glaciers, i.e. carried into caves by glacial meltwaters, resulting from surface glacial deposit erosion. They generally show 3 dominant facies: A) lacustrine deposits; B) alluvial deposits and C) debris flow deposits facies. The only way of testing the soundness of the forementioned hypothesis is to study the main characters and spreading of cave sediments, since they are the only real data on connection of glaciers to endokarst networks.

Interactions of calcareous suspended sediment with glacial meltwater: a field test of dissolution behaviour, 1999, Fairchild Ij, Killawee Ja, Hubbard B, Dreybrodt W,

24 h Tracer Tests on Diurnal Parameter Variability in a Subglacial Karst Conduit: Small River Valley, Canada., 2001, Ross Jh. , Serefiddin F. , Hauns M. , Smart C. C.
Repeated dye tracer tests were undertaken for two complete diurnal discharge cycles at Small River Glacier, British Columbia. The injection site is a well developed glacier moulin. Monitoring was done at a karst spring in a cave entrance 1530 m down valley. The spring is the major outlet of glacial meltwater and also drains karstified glacier forefields. High flow velocities and low dispersivities indicate a very well developed conduit flow system. Discharge and velocity show strong diurnal cycles and are controlled by the amount of meltwater. The relationship of increasing velocity with discharge is approximately linear. Dispersivity values do not show any significant variation under diurnal discharge cycles. These results show the importance of diurnal variation in a transient groundwater system.

Efficient hydrologic tracer-test design for tracer-mass estimation and sample-collection frequency, 2. Experimental results, 2002, Field Ms,
Effective tracer-test design requires that the likely results be predicted in advance of test initiation to ensure tracer-test success. EHTD-predicted breakthrough curves (BTCs) for various hydrological conditions were compared with measured BTCs obtained from actual tracer tests. The hydrological conditions for the tracer tests ranged from flowing streams to porous-media systems. Tracer tests evaluated included flowing streams tracer tests conducted in small and large surface-water streams, a karst solution conduit, and a glacial-meltwater stream and porous-media systems conducted as natural-gradient, forced-gradient, injection-withdrawal, and recirculation tracer tests. Comparisons between the actual tracer tests and the predicted results showed that tracer breakthrough, hydraulic characteristics, and sample-collection frequency may be forecasted sufficiently well in most instances as to facilitate good tracer-test design. Comparisons were generally improved by including tracer decay and/or retardation in the simulations. Inclusion of tracer decay in the simulations also tended to require an increase in set average tracer concentration to facilitate matching peak concentrations in the measured BTCs, however. Both nonreactive tracer and reactive tracer predictions produced recommended sample-collection frequencies that would adequately define the actual BTCs, but estimated tracer-mass estimates were less precise

Flow capture and reversal in the Agen Allwedd Entrance Series, south Wales: evidence for glacial flooding and impoundment, 2007, Simms, Michael J And John B Hunt.
Detailed observations of passage morphology, scallop orientations, and cross-cutting relationships of vadose notches and roof heights within a small area of the Agen Allwedd cave system, south Wales, reveal a complex history of flow re-routing linked to several successive phreatic-vadose cycles. At least three discrete phases of phreatic development can be recognized, each succeeded by a period of vadose entrenchment. Two distinct episodes of flow diversion are evident and were initiated during separate phreatic phases. The repeated establishment of phreatic conditions at such a high level within the cave system can be attributed either to glacial impoundment of meltwater recharge and/or the creation of a localized perched phreas as a result of temporary blockages. We conclude that glacial meltwater from the Usk valley glacier entered the cave along its northern edge and was impounded as a result of valley glaciers blocking lower outlets, causing flooding of the entire cave system during glaciations. Vadose entrenchment then occurred as much of the cave was drained during ensuing interglacial(s). Drainage rerouting occurred in response to temporary, but prolonged, blockages that allowed meltwater recharge to generate high hydrostatic pressures. Newly opened or exposed fractures in the limestone were thereby exploited, creating bypass routes. This model, which is consistent with what is known of ice depths across the region during the Pleistocene, has significant implications for the evolution of the entire cave system and indeed for other caves in broadly analogous situations in south Wales and beyond.

Relationships between cave dimensions and local catchment areas in Central Scandinavia: implications for speleogenesis, 2009, Faulkner, Trevor.
The caves formed in the Caledonide metalimestones of Central Scandinavia are identified as occurring in three cave hydrological classes that are randomly intermingled with each other both geographically and altitudinally: relict, mainly vadose (MV) and combination caves. The morphology of the relict caves shows that they were enlarged phreatically. Their dimensions of length, cross-section and volume are unrelated to their local catchment area, whose mean size is only 2.6km2. Indeed, large relict caves may be found near ridge tops, and their mean cross-section to catchment area ratio (XS/CA) is as large as 20.3m2km-2. MV caves contain active stream passages and sumps without significant phreatic upper levels or passages. Although there is no simple relationship between their mean dimensions and their local catchment area, which has a mean size of 4.7km2, their mean XS/CA ratio is only 2.8m2km-2. However, their maximum dimensions are constrained by the logarithm of catchment area. The combination caves contain relict phreatic (and, more rarely, relict vadose) passages that lie above an active vadose streamway and they have mean dimensions significantly larger than those of both relict and MV caves. Their mean CA is 4.6km2 (close to that of the other active cave class) and their mean XS/CA ratio is 11.6m2km-2, which is intermediate between relict caves and MV caves. These observations suggest that the active vadose passages developed during the present conditions of the Holocene, with dimensions related to the flow-rates of present allogenic recharge, as supported by likely entrenchment and waterfall recession rates. In contrast, the relict phreatic passages probably enlarged when the caves were submerged by flowing glacial meltwater that was less related to present catchment area, during a previous deglaciation phase. Most relict caves and the whole set of MV caves seem to have each separately experienced only one phase of cave enlargement after inception, with phreatic development favoured at valley shoulder and ridge cave locations and vadose development favoured at valley floors with large catchments. The larger dimensions and greater complexity of the combination caves indicate that they are more representative of the full range of enlargement opportunities that were available during the evolution of their local topography during one or more full cycles of glaciation, deglaciation and interglaciation.

Alpine glaciers store large amounts of freshwater contributing to groundwater recharge during warmer periods, but the interactions between glaciers and aquifers have rarely been investigated in detail. The Tsanfleuron-Sanetsch area, Switzerland, is an ideal test site to study glacier-aquifer interactions. It consists of a rapidly retreating glacier (2.8 km2) overlying a karst aquifer drained by a spring (mean discharge 600700 L/s) used for drinking water supply and irrigation. The geometry and structure of the glacier were assessed by means of geophysical surveys, using radiomagnetotellurics (RMT). The estimated ice volume is 1.0 x 10^8 m3 (0.92 x 10^8 m3 water equivalent), but the glacier currently loses 1.5 m ice thickness per year. Field observations, flow measurements and tracer tests allowed characterisation of glacier drainage and aquifer recharge. Three recharge pathways have been identified: 1) The main glacial stream sinks into the aquifer via swallow holes 3 km downstream of the glacier mouth; 2) Numerous small meltwater streams sink underground shortly below the glacier front; 3) Subglacial meltwaters and supraglacial streams sink into the glacier via moulins and contribute to aquifer recharge through fractures and swallow holes underneath the glacier. Recharge and spring discharge display strong diurnal and seasonal variability, with a general highflow period during snow and glacier melt from spring to autumn. Preliminary predictions of the future availability of spring water after disappearance of the glacier suggest that the discharge may decrease by 2030%. Nearly all of this loss will occur in summer and autumn, presumably resulting in temporary water shortage.

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