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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 gradient is the change in hydraulic head over some given distance (dh/dl) with ground-water flow usually occurring in the direction of decreasing hydraulic head which requires by convention, the attaching of a minus sign to any equation utilizing a gradient for flow. the maximum value of the directional derivative [16].?

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Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
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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 ground-penetrating radar (Keyword) returned 11 results for the whole karstbase:
USING GROUND-PENETRATING RADAR TO INVESTIGATE A SUBSURFACE KARST LANDSCAPE IN NORTH-CENTRAL FLORIDA, 1994, Collins Me, Cum M, Hanninen P,
Doline formation in karst areas has been a major concern in Florida. Recently, there has been increased interest in investigating the subsurface conditions that influences preferential flow in these karst landscapes. This information is necessary to improve transport and fate models of contaminants. In addition, there is interest in knowing if the formation and expansion of dolines can be predicted by studying subsurface conditions and flow patterns. The soils on the Newberry Limestone Plain are typically sandy above a thin or absent phosphatic, clayey Hawthorne Formation. Underlying this formation is the Crystal River Limestone. A field survey with ground-penetrating radar (GPR) was conducted on the Newberry Limestone Plain at a site with recently formed dolines. The objectives were (i) to investigate the subsurface materials, (ii) to ascertain subsurface landscape variability, (iii) to relate the subsurface landscapes to subsurface flow patterns, and (iv) to predict doline growth and formation in the study area. The results of this study indicated that the subsurface features; presence of clay over limestone, location of solution pipes and paleo-dolines are variable. In general, the subsurface landscape does not follow the surface topography. Subsurface solute movement can be estimated in these landscapes assuming the clay layer that drapes the limestone acts as an aquatarde. Thus, subsurface modeling of flow at the study site is improved. Locations of paleo-dolines and solution pipes were obvious in the radar data. Predictions, though, of future doline formation and growth at the study site were difficult with GPR. Fracture patterns, e.g. dips in the limestone, can be evaluated and weak zones where paleo-dolines have formed can be identified. This study would not have been possible without the use of the GPR. The radar was able to obtain continuous information on 16% of the site to a depth of 3 m. A highly detailed soil survey using conventional methods would have provided only 0.8% coverage of the site

Using ground-penetrating radar to investigate a subsurface karst landscape in north-central Florida, 1994, Collins M. E. , Cure M. , Hanninen P.

Doline formation in karst areas has been a major concern in Florida. Recently, there has been increased interest in investigating the subsurface conditions that influences preferential flow in these karst landscapes. This information is necessary to improve transport and fate models of contaminants. In addition, there is interest in knowing if the formation and expansion of dolines can be predicted by studying subsurface conditions and flow patterns. The soils on the Newberry Limestone Plain are typically sandy above a thin or absent phosphatic, clayey Hawthorne Formation. Underlying this formation is the Crystal River Limestone. A field survey with ground-penetrating radar (GPR) was conducted on the Newberry Limestone Plain at a site with recently formed dolines. The objectives were (i) to investigate the subsurface materials, (ii) to ascertain subsurface landscape variability, (iii) to relate the subsurface landscapes to subsurface flow patterns, and (iv) to predict doline growth and formation in the study area. The results of this study indicated that the subsurface features; presence of clay over limestone, location of solution pipes and paleo-dolines are variable. In general, the subsurface landscape does not follow the surface topography. Subsurface solute movement can be estimated in these landscapes assuming the clay layer that drapes the limestone acts as an aquatarde. Thus, subsurface modeling of flow at the study site is improved. Locations of paleo-dolines and solution pipes were obvious in the radar data. Predictions, though, of future doline formation and growth at the study site were difficult with GPR. Fracture patterns, e.g. dips in the limestone, can be evaluated and weak zones where paleo-dolines have formed can be identified. This study would not have been possible without the use of the GPR. The radar was able to obtain continuous information on 16% of the site to a depth of 3 m. A highly detailed soil survey using conventional methods would have provided only 0.8% coverage of the site


Geophysical surveys over karst recharge features, Illinois, USA, 2001, Carpenter Pj, Ahmed S,
Karst aquifers supply a significant fraction of the world's drinking water. These types of aquifers are also highly susceptible to pollution from the surface with recharge usually occurring through fractures and solution openings at the bedrock surface. Thickness of the protective soil cover, macropores and openings within the soil cover, and the nature of the weathered bedrock surface all influence infiltration. Recharge openings at the bedrock surface, however, are often covered by unconsolidated sediments, resulting in the inadvertent placement of landfills, unregulated dump sites, tailing piles, waste lagoons and septic systems over recharge zones. In these settings surface geophysical surveys, calibrated by a few soil cores, could be employed to identify these recharge openings, and qualitatively assess the protection afforded by the soil cover. In a test of this hypothesis, geophysical measurements accurately predicted the thickness of unconsolidated deposits overlying karstic dolomite at a site about 100 km south of Chicago, Illinois. Zones of elevated electrical conductivity and high ground-penetrating radar (GPR) attenuation within the sediments coincided with subcropping solutionally-enlarged hydraulically active bedrock fractures. These fractures extend to over 12-m depth, as shown by 2-D inverted resistivity sections and soil coring. Anomalous electromagnetic (EM) conductivity and GPR response may be due to higher soil moisture above these enlarged fractures. An epikarstal conduit at 2.5-m depth was directly identified through a GPR survey. These results suggest that surface geophysical surveys are a viable tool for assessing the susceptibility of shallow karst aquifers to contamination

Use of ground-penetrating radar for assessment of potential sinkhole conditions: an example from Ghor al Haditha area, Jordan, 2002, Awni Tb, Abdelruhman Aa, Khaled Am,

maging subsurface cavities using geoelectric tomography and ground-penetrating radar., 2005, Elqady G. , Hafez M. , Abdalla M. A. , Ushijima K.
In the past few years, construction extended extraordinarily to the southeast of Cairo, Egypt, where limestone caves occur. The existence of caves and sinkholes represents a hazard for such new urban areas. Therefore, it is important to know the size, position, and depth of natural voids and cavities before building or reconstruction. Recently, cavity imaging using geophysical surveys has become common. In this paper, both geoelectric-resistivity tomography using a dipole-dipole array and ground-penetrating radar (GPR) have been applied to the east of Kattamya at Al-Amal Town, Cairo, to image shallow subsurface cavities. The state is planning to construct a new housing development there. The resistivity survey was conducted along three profiles over an exposed cave with unknown extensions. The radar survey was conducted over an area of 1040 m, and both sets of data were processed and interpreted integrally to image the cave as well as the shallow subsurface structure of the site. As a result, the cave at a depth of about 2 m and a width of about 4 m was detected using the geophysical data, which correlates with the -known cave system. Moreover, an extension of the detected cave has been inferred. The survey revealed that the area is also affected by vertical and nearly vertical linear fractures. Additionally, zones of marl and fractured limestone and some karstic features were mapped.

Outcrop analog for TrentonBlack River hydrothermal dolomite reservoirs, Mohawk Valley, New York , 2006, Slater B. E. , Smith Jr. L. B.

Geochemical analysis and field relations of linear dolomite bodies occurring in outcrop in the Mohawk Valley of New York suggest that the area has undergone a significant faultrelated hydrothermal alteration. The dolomite occurs in the Lower Ordovician Tribes Hill Formation, which is regionally a Lower Ordovician shaley limestone with patchy dolomitization. The outcrop has an en echelon fault, fracture, and fold pattern. A three-dimensional (3-D) ground-penetrating radar (GPR) survey of the quarry floor has helped to map out faults, fractures, anticlines, synclines, and the extent of dolomitization. Most of the dolomitization occurs in fault-bounded synclines or sags flanked by anticlines. The dolomite structures are highly localized, occurring around faults, and are absent away from the faults and fractures. Trenches cut across the outcrop help relate offset along faults to the overall geometry of the dolomitized bodies. Geochemical analysis, although helpful in characterizing the conditions of dolomitization, does not define its origin absolutely. This study uses fluid inclusions, stable isotopes, 3-D GPR, core analysis, and surficial observations, which all show a link between faulting, dolomitization, and other hydrothermal alteration. Although the outcrop is much too small and shallow to act as a producing gas field, it serves as a scaled analog for the Trenton–Black River hydrothermal dolomite reservoirs of eastern United States. It may therefore be studied to help petroleum geologists characterize existing gas plays and prospect future areas of exploration.


Karst and Early Fracture Networks in Carbonates, Turks and Caicos Islands, British West Indies, 2007, Guidry Sean A. , Grasmueck Mark, Carpenter Daniel G. , Gombos Andrew M. Jr. , Bachtel Steven L. , Viggiano David A. ,
Historically, studies of Quaternary carbonates have not adequately addressed the influence of early fracture networks on diagenesis. Because of this lack of detail, understanding and predicting fracture-related diagenetic heterogeneities and preferential fluid flow pathways in ancient carbonate successions is particularly challenging. The Pleistocene oolitic grainstones of the Caicos platform provide an excellent opportunity to evaluate the relative importance of fractures on early diagenetic alteration styles, and are a suitable analog for subsurface carbonate reservoirs. Detailed analyses of fractures (e.g., orientation, aperture, spacing, fill material) from Caicos outcrops combined with high-resolution, three-dimensional ground-penetrating radar (3D GPR), assisted in exploring the causality and distribution of fractures and relationship to karst. Four models were evaluated to explain the observed distribution of dolines: (1) gravitational, fractured-margin controlled, (2) tectonic-fracture controlled, (3) antecedent-topography controlled, and (4) a hybrid model. Based on observations of numerous fractures (n = 306) on the western Caicos platform, early fractures are abundant and dominantly margin-parallel. These fracture networks are well established in limestones prior to mineralogical stabilization, thereby indicating that diagenetic heterogeneities evolve very early in carbonate diagenesis. The spatial distribution of dolines on Providenciales is likely the result of a complex interplay between the antecedent topography, margin-parallel fracture systems, and meteoric fluids. Resultant diagenetic alteration is far more complicated than simple, unconfined, meteoric lenses associated with topographic highs. Any attempts to model early diagenesis in carbonates should not dismiss the role of fractures as diagenetic facilitators and diagenetic anisotropy templates

Ground-penetrating radar investigation of a rapidly developed small island in a lake in southern Georgia, USA, 2010, Denizman, Can, Brevik, Eric C. And Doolittle, Jim

GPR detection of several common subsurface voids inside dikes and dams, 2010, Xu X. , Zeng Q. , Li D. , Wu J. , Wu X. , Shen J.

Ground-penetrating radar (GPR) technique has been used in detecting several common subsurface voids inside dikes and dams in south of China, and the results indicate that GPR can be successfully applied to uncovering termite nests inside dikes and dams, and the technique proves to be advantageous in real-time retrieval of detection data, precise positioning and effect of application being basically not affected by locality and climate, when it is compared to other available methods. GPR is also effective in detecting cracks in the sloping clay core, and proves to pose less impact on the normal operation of the detected hydraulic projects, be more efficient, and capable of retrieving more comprehensive detection data, when compared with the method of artificial observation through holes chiseled out from the ground. Also, GPR is capable of detecting ferralsol in tropical and subtropical regions to some depth, and shows high value of application in detecting some hidden troubles such as caves and settlements with low to moderate depths inside dams in karst regions. Moreover, GPR technique proves to be so capable of detecting carbonate rocks to certain depth and can yield precise results that it can be applied to analysis and discovery of leakage channels inside reservoirs in karst regions


Paleokarst Breccia-Pipe Reservoir Analogue, Carboniferous, Svalbard, 2011, Wheeler Walter, Tveranger Jan, Lauritzen Steinerik, Heincke Björn, Rossi Guiliana, Allroggen Niklas, Buckley Simon

Upwards-propagating collapse pipes typically form sinkholes where they meet the land surface. Renewed dissolution of breccia in ancient pipes can have a similar effect. For these cases, probability-based models of sinkhole hazard are closely related to the expected mature architecture of the collapse-pipe field. We present a case study of the architecture of a square-kilometre field of collapse-pipes from the Carboniferous-Permian in which the pipes are documented in outcrop and using shallow geophysical methods.

The study site is located on the Wordiekammen plateau in the Carboniferous Billefjorden half-graben basin on Spitsbergen. Cliffs bounding the plateau expose breccia pipes cutting a gently-dipping 200-m-thick series of platform carbonates, in turn underlain by stratiform breccias and residual pods of gypsum. Many of the breccia pipes are tall (>250 m) and postdate several shallow karstification episodes. Most pipes are inferred not to have reached the surface based on a lack of terrigenous material and fluvial structure, although several pipes show indications of such surface communication. Although the pipes are generally attributed to gypsum dissolution, a deep carbonate karstification event is inferred based on high temperature calcite cement, and burial dehydration of gypsum, may also have contributed to void formation.

On the plateau top the collapse pipes are obscured by thick scree, thus km-scale size and spacing data for the pipes and faults was collected by mapping the bedrock with 2D ground-penetrating radar (GPR). GPR profiles were acquired on a grid with 25-meter line spacing, using 50 MHz antennas and achieving 30-40 m penetration. Breccia bodies were identified by steep-sided zones of complex diffraction patterns interrupting bedding-related continuous reflections. Two pipes were further studied in 3D using high-resolution GPR, tomographic seismic and geo-electric. These geophysical data were merged into a comprehensive 3D framework including helicopter-borne lidar and photo scans of the plateau rim geology, thus allowing an integrated visualization and interpretation of the different datasets. The GPR data show the breccia pipes to be slightly oblate with diameters ranging from 20 to over 100 m; 60 meters is a typical value. Approximately 10 pipes are identified in cliff-side outcrops bordering the GPR area, whereas 30 more are identified within the plateau by the GPR data. The GPR volume lies about 200 m above the pipe base, hence the pipe-length frequency-distribution data are incomplete. The strata are cut by small-offset (<5m) faults related to collapse processes and larger-offset faults related to regional basin extension. The breccia pipe field appears to be delimited by these more regional faults, in turn inferred to control the thickness of syn-rift gypsum and/or the hydrology of its dissolution. Collapse breccia pipes form strong vertical heterogeneities in rock properties such as porosity and permeability, matrix density, cement, mechanical strength and lithology, affecting fluid-flow characteristics on a meter to hundred-meter scale. It is rare that pipe fields are well exposed at the kilometre scale. Although some scaling data can be obtained from 3D oil-industry seismic reflection data but the resolution insufficient to visualize critical details. The outcrop combination of seismic, electric and geologic techniques facilitates the interpretation of 3D facies architectures and by proxy porosity-permeability relationships. Studies at the km scale are fundamental for understanding basic karst and collapse processes, and yield petrophysical models that can be applied predictively to natural hazards and groundwater or hydrocarbon exploitation in paleokarst settings.


Geophysics of Locating Karst and Caves, 2012, Am Ende, Barbara Anne

Many solution cavities ranging from small voids to full-size caves have no entrances and therefore no access from the surface. Geophysical methods can be used, with varying degrees of reliability, to detect such cavities and can also provide information on the bedrock/regolith interface. These methods include microgravity, electrical resistivity, audio-magnetotelluric soundings, ground-penetrating radar, shallow seismic probes, synthetic aperture radar, and thermal probes. Magnetic induction (cave radio) can provide precise locations of underground passages if they have a surface access.


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